Speaker, Lt. Governor take office - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Speaker, Lt. Governor take office

^ Speaker, Terry Coleman ^ Speaker, Terry Coleman
^ Lt. Governor Mark Taylor ^ Lt. Governor Mark Taylor
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January 13, 2003

Along with the new governor comes a new speaker of the House, Democratic representative Terry Coleman.

In a shakeup in the senate, Democratic Lieutenant Governor Mark Taylor is stripped of his power to appoint committees. House members have elected the first new Speaker of the House in more than a quarter of a century, but it wasn't as dramatic as expected.

The general assembly gaveled in Monday morning at the capitol. About thirty minutes earlier, Democratic state representative Larry Walker withdrew his candidacy for Speaker of the House.

Walker had promised to share power with the GOP and had the support of governor Perdue. He says he's never seen so much pressure when it comes to members deciding whom to vote for.

In the end, Democrat Terry Coleman was elected against Republican house leader Lynn Westmoreland by 39 votes. Tom Murphy lost his re-election bid in November. The powerful Democrat served as speaker of the house for almost thirty years.