Pennsylvania Lawmakers Advance Proposal to End Lieutenant Governor Elections
The Pennsylvania state Senate has voted to advance a proposed constitutional amendment that would end the current practice of having the governor and lieutenant governor run separately for their party’s nomination.
Currently, candidates for Pennsylvania governor and lieutenant governor run in separate primaries for their party’s nomination but run on a joint ticket in the general election.
The proposed amendment endorsed by the Republican-controlled state Senate Wednesday by a 46-2 vote, would enable gubernatorial candidates to select a lieutenant governor in a manner similar to how presidential candidates select their running mates.
“In the past, we have seen a leadership team separate into two warring factions that spent weeks not even talking to one another,” said state Sen. David G. Argall, the primary sponsor of the bill.
“If we want to succeed in Pennsylvania, then our top two executive officials need to see eye-to-eye on the issues and not get distracted by petty rivalries,” he added.
Under the proposal, Senate Bill 133, the governor would pick his or her running mate prior to the November general election. However, the pick would still have to be approved by the nominee’s political party before being added to the ballot.
The Pennsylvania Senate initially voted in favor of the measure last April, 46-2, and the state’s Republican-controlled House passed the measure 130-67 in December, with most of the Democrats in the chamber voting against it.
The House amended the legislation to add a provision for third party candidates wanting to run for lieutenant governor, necessitating a second vote in the Senate.
Because the Pennsylvania Constitution requires the legislature to approve an amendment during two successive legislative sessions, the legislature will need to adopt the amendment again during the 2021-2022 session for it to appear on the ballot.
Pennsylvania is one of eight states in which the lieutenant governor is nominated in a separate primary but runs on a single ticket with the gubernatorial nominee in the general election.
In 26 states, gubernatorial and lieutenant gubernatorial candidates appear on the same ticket as running mates. In 18 of those states, gubernatorial candidates select their running mates either before or after the primary.
In 17 states, the lieutenant governor is elected separately from the governor.
If approved and added to the ballot in 2021, it could be in effect for the 2022 gubernatorial election.
In The News
Eighteen members of Congress on Wednesday announced the formation of a new Congressional Caucus whose intent is to ensure that the priorities and concerns of cities and counties across America are heard on Capitol Hill. The bipartisan Congressional Caucus of Former Local Elected Officials was formed... Read More
Thirty-five states are at extreme or high risk of partisan gerrymandering, according to an in-depth report by the nonpartisan RepresentUs organization. The Gerrymandering Threat Index rates all 50 states, and its authors argue their findings underscore the urgent need to pass the redistricting reforms within the... Read More
WASHINGTON - A bipartisan bill to extend the Paycheck Protection Program to May 31 is gaining support in the House and the Senate and will likely be voted on before lawmakers head back to their districts at the end of the month. The proposal to extend... Read More
WASHINGTON - It’s hard to believe it’s almost that time of year again, but on Monday came word that the peak bloom for the cherry blossoms ringing the Tidal Basin in Washington is currently expected to occur April 2-5. That means the most vivid of blooms... Read More
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Josh Venable, a longtime Michigan GOP operative and chief of staff to former U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, can trace the arc of the state's Republican Party clearly."This was the state where to be Republican was defined by Gerald Ford and George... Read More
NEW YORK (AP) — Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. fought for a year and a half to get access to former President Donald Trump's tax records.Now, thanks to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling, he will soon have them. But what will that mean for... Read More