|Governor of California|
|Government of California|
|Status|| Head of state |
Head of government
|Seat|| California State Capitol |
(Workplace and reception center)
|Term length||Four-year term, renewable once|
|Constituting instrument||Constitution of California|
|Inaugural holder||Peter Hardeman Burnett|
|Formation||December 20, 1849|
|Deputy||Lieutenant Governor of California|
The governor of California is the head of government of the U.S. state of California. The governor is the commander-in-chief of the California National Guard and the California State Guard.
Established in the Constitution of California, the governor's responsibilities also include making the annual State of the State address to the California State Legislature, submitting the budget, and ensuring that state laws are enforced. The position was created in 1849, the year before California became a state.
The current governor of California is Democrat Gavin Newsom, who was inaugurated on January 7, 2019.
A candidate for governor must be a U.S. citizen and a registered voter within the state, must not have been convicted of a felony involving bribery, embezzlement, or extortion, and must not have served two terms since November 6, 1990.
Governors are elected by popular ballot and serve terms of four years, with a limit of two terms, if served after November 6, 1990.Governors take the following oath:
I (Governor) do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California against all enemies foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California, that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties upon which I am about to enter.
Governors take office on the first Monday after January 1 after their election.
Two methods exist to remove a governor.
The governor can be impeached for "misconduct in office" by the State Assembly and removed by a two-thirds vote of the State Senate.
Petitions signed by California state voters equal to 12% of the last vote for the office of governor (with signatures from each of five counties equal to 1% of the last vote for Governor in the county) can launch a gubernatorial recall election. The voters can then vote on whether or not to recall the incumbent Governor, and on the same ballot can vote for a potential replacement. If a majority of the voters in the election vote to recall the Governor, then the person who gains a plurality of the votes in the replacement race will become Governor.
Only two governor recall attempts have ever gained enough signatures to make the ballot in California. The 2003 California gubernatorial recall election began with a petition drive that forced Democratic Governor Gray Davis into a recall election, which he lost. He was replaced by Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger. It was the first time that a California governor was voted out of office.
In addition to the successful 2003 recall, current governor Gavin Newsom faced a recall election, which he defeated in September 2021.
The Lieutenant Governor of California is separately elected during the same election, not jointly as the running mate of the gubernatorial candidate. As such, California had a Governor and a Lieutenant Governor of different parties for 28 of the 33 years between 1978 and 2011, whereas previously, this had only occurred in 1875, 1886, 1894 and 1916-1917 due to the resignation or death of an incumbent Governor or Lieutenant Governor.
This occasionally becomes significant, since the California Constitution provides that all the powers of the Governor fall to the Lieutenant Governor whenever the governor is not in the state of California, with the Lieutenant Governor sometimes signing or vetoing legislation or making political appointments whenever the Governor leaves the state.
In practice, there is a gentlemen's agreement for the Lieutenant Governor not to perform more than perfunctory duties while the Governor is away from the state: this agreement was violated when Mike Curb was in office, as he signed several executive orders at odds with the Brown administration when Brown was out of the state. Court rulings have upheld the Lieutenant Governor's right to perform the duties and assume all of the prerogatives of Governor while the Governor is out of the state.
The Lieutenant Governor is also the president of the California State Senate.
This section contains a list of miscellaneous information.(November 2018)
The official residence of Californian governor is the California Governor's Mansion, in Sacramento. The mansion has served as the residence of 14 governors, while others have declined to reside in the mansion, preferring to arrange for private residential arrangements. It is also one of the official workplaces for the governor.
The governor's primary official workplace is located within the California State Capitol in Sacramento.
The Stanford Mansion, in Sacramento, serves as one of the official workplaces for the governor, as well as the official reception center for the California government.
The following timeline depicts the progression of the governors and their political affiliation at the time of assuming office.
The government of California is the governmental structure of the U.S. state of California as established by the California Constitution. California uses the separation of powers system to structure its government. It is composed of three branches: the executive, consisting of the Governor of California and the other constitutionally elected and appointed officers and offices; the legislative, consisting of the California State Legislature, which includes the Assembly and the Senate; and the judicial, consisting of the Supreme Court of California and lower courts. There is also local government, consisting of counties, cities, special districts, and school districts, as well as government entities and offices that operate independently on a constitutional, statutory, or common law basis. The state also allows direct participation of the electorate by initiative, referendum, recall and ratification.
Hiram Warren Johnson was an American attorney and politician who served as the 23rd governor of California from 1911 to 1917. Johnson achieved national prominence in the early 20th century. He was elected in 1916 as the United States Senator from California, where he was repeatedly re-elected and served until 1945.
The governor of Wisconsin is the head of government of Wisconsin and the commander-in-chief of the state's army and air forces. The governor has a duty to enforce state laws, and the power to either approve or veto bills passed by the Wisconsin Legislature, to convene the legislature, and to grant pardons, except in cases of treason and impeachment. The position was first filled by Nelson Dewey on June 7, 1848, the year Wisconsin became a state. Prior to statehood, there were four governors of Wisconsin Territory.
The lieutenant governor of California is the second highest executive officer of the government of the U.S. state of California. The lieutenant governor is elected to serve a four-year term and can serve a maximum of two terms. In addition to largely ministerial roles, serving as acting governor in the absence of the governor of California and as President of the California State Senate, the lieutenant governor either sits on many of California's regulatory commissions and executive agencies.
William Dennison Stephens was an American federal and state politician. A three-term member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1911 to 1916, Stephens was the 24th governor of California from 1917 to 1923.
John Herman Cox is an American businessman, housing developer, and political activist, who has run for public office several times, mostly recently for Governor of California as the GOP candidate.
The lieutenant governor of Oklahoma is the second-highest executive official of the state government of Oklahoma. As first in the gubernatorial line of succession, the lieutenant governor becomes the new governor of Oklahoma upon the death, resignation, or removal of the governor. The lieutenant governor also serves as the president of the Oklahoma Senate, and may cast a vote to break ties in that chamber.
Elections in California are held to fill various local, state and federal seats. In California, regular elections are held every even year ; however, some seats have terms of office that are longer than two years, so not every seat is on the ballot in every election. Special elections may be held to fill vacancies at other points in time. Recall elections can also be held. Additionally, statewide initiatives, legislative referrals and referendums may be on the ballot.
The 1962 California gubernatorial election was held on November 6, 1962. The Democratic incumbent, Pat Brown, ran for re-election against former U.S. vice president and 1960 Republican presidential nominee Richard Nixon. In his concession speech, Nixon accused the media of favoring his opponent Brown, stating that it was his "last press conference" and "You won't have Nixon to kick around any more." Six years later, Nixon was elected President of the United States.
The 2010 California gubernatorial election was held November 2, 2010 to elect the Governor of California. The primary elections were held on June 8, 2010. Because constitutional office holders in California have been prohibited from serving more than two terms in the same office since November 6, 1990, incumbent Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger was term-limited and thus was ineligible to run for re-election to a third term. Former Governor Jerry Brown, to whom the term limits did not apply due to a grandfather clause, defeated Meg Whitman in the general election. Brown was sworn into office on January 3, 2011.
The 2003 United States elections, most of which were held on Tuesday, November 4, were off-year elections in which no members of the Congress were standing for election. However, there were three gubernatorial races, state legislative elections in four states, numerous citizen initiatives, mayoral races in several major cities, and a variety of local offices on the ballot.
A lieutenant governor is an official in state governments of 45 out of 50 of the United States. In most cases, the lieutenant governor is the highest officer of state after the governor, standing in for that officer when they are absent from the state or temporarily incapacitated. In the event a governor dies, resigns or is removed from office, the lieutenant governor typically becomes governor.
The 2014 California gubernatorial election was held on November 4, 2014, to elect the Governor of California, concurrently with elections for the rest of California's executive branch, as well as elections to the United States Senate in other states and elections to the United States House of Representatives and various state and local elections.
The 2014 California lieutenant gubernatorial election was held on November 4, 2014, to elect the lieutenant governor of California. Incumbent Democratic Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom ran for re-election to a second term in office.
Kevin Patrick Kiley is an American politician, attorney, and former educator serving in the California State Assembly since 2016. He is a Republican who represents the 6th district, which is a northeast area outside Sacramento, composed of Sacramento suburbs, exurbs, and rural areas. Kiley was a candidate to replace California governor Gavin Newsom in a voter-initiated recall election which was held on September 14, 2021. Kiley is the representative-elect for California's 3rd congressional district, having won the 2022 election as the Republican nominee.
United States gubernatorial elections were held on November 2, 2021, in two states, New Jersey and Virginia, and a recall election was held in California on September 14. These elections form part of the 2021 United States elections. The last gubernatorial elections for New Jersey and Virginia were in 2017, and the last regular gubernatorial election for California was in 2018. Going into the elections, all three seats were held by Democrats.
The 2021 United States elections were held in large part on Tuesday, November 2, 2021. This off-year election included the regular gubernatorial elections in New Jersey and Virginia. In addition, state legislative elections were held for the New Jersey Legislature and Virginia House of Delegates, along with numerous state legislative special elections, citizen initiatives, mayoral races, and a variety of other local elections. Six special elections to the United States House of Representatives also took place on November 2 or earlier as a result of either deaths or vacancies. The first of these was held on March 20.
The 2022 California gubernatorial election was held on November 8, 2022, to elect the governor of California, with the statewide top-two primary election taking place on June 7, 2022. Incumbent Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom ran and won reelection to a second term after surviving a recall election in 2021, during his first term.
The 2021 California gubernatorial recall election was a special recall election that began in August 2021 and concluded on September 14, 2021, when California voters chose not to recall incumbent Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom, elected for the term January 2019 to January 2023.