The eyes of hundreds of strectators were fixed on Samuel W. Bogley this afternoon as he was sworn in as Maryland's second lieutenant governor. But it was Bogley, a county councilman whose name and face were scarcely known outside his native Prince George's County just seven months ago, who felt like a spectator.
"I had nothing other to do really than be there on time and carry out my portion of the [swearing in]," said Bogley, who wore blue jogging pants underneath his formal morning suit to protect him from the winter weather at the outdoor inauguration ceremony.
"I sat there [on the speaker's platform] kind of like a spectator," he said. He and his wife, Rita, frequently smiled and waved at friends and family members whom they spotted in the audience.
Bogley's newness to the state political limelight showed through even in one of his proudest moments today. Upon congratulating him as lieutenant governor, Clark Clifford, former defense secretary, called him "Mr. Bagley" -- at which Bogley's 8-year-old daughter protested audibly, "They called my daddy Bagley ."
A year ago, Bogley's daughter would have been one of the few people to notice such a mispronunication. Nobody was paving much attention to Bogley at that time, since the Prince George's County Democratic organization had purged him from its slate of county council candidates.
After that, Bogley had said he would drop out of political life and go back to his law practice then the maverick councilman got a phone call from a campaign aide of Democratic longshot gubernatorial candidate Harry Hughes, who invited Bogley to be Hughes' running mate.
"He wants me? Bogley said disbelievingly, when he finally understood what he was being asked.
But today some of Maryland's most powerful political figures, who had never seen or met the blond, boyish-looking lieutenant governor before, hung on his every word and action and waited hours to shake his hand and say a few words to him in a reception line at the State House.
Bogley said he feels more comfortable now in his role as lieutenant governor. His key function, he believes, is being a liaison between state government and county and municipal governments. During the past few weeks he has been traveling to various counties to meet with local officials. Last night he returned home after midnight from a trip to the Eastern Shore.
This morning the Bogley family woke up around 6 because Bogley insisted that they attend services at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church before heading for the inauguration, according to Bogley's father-in-law, Robert J. Brady Sr.
Bogley, who arrived in Annapolis after the church service this morning in a tan Ford LTD carrying a duffle bag and an umbrella, is still very much the new guy around town. He said he is still discovering new rooms in the State House, and he still seems owed by his new perquisites.
"You know, hon, if you ever come up [to Annapolis] and I'm not here," Bogley told his wife, "There'll be a parking space for you here. It will have a sign that says state trooper."
Soon after, a state trooper led the Bogleys to their new state car. "What's Blair Lee going to use to get home?" Bogley asked with some concern when he saw the car.
"He's gone," the trooper said.
"Well, you won't be able to put your tennis shoes all over that car," Bogley's wife said.