Governor of Arizona

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Arizona Governor
General information
Office Type:  Partisan
Office website:  Official Link
2012 FY Budget:  $6,788,600
Term limits:  2
Length of term:   4 years
Authority:  Arizona Constitution, Article V, Section 1
Selection Method:  Elected
Current Officeholder

JanBrewer Portrait.jpg
Name:  Jan Brewer
Officeholder Party:  Republican
Assumed office:  January 20, 2009
Compensation:  $95,000
Other Arizona Executive Offices
GovernorSecretary of StateAttorney GeneralTreasurerSuperintendent of Public InstructionAuditorAgriculture DirectorInsurance DirectorLands CommissionerLabor DirectorCorporation CommissionState Mine Inspector
Arkansas Businessman[1]
The Governor of Arizona is an elected Constitutional officer, the head of the Executive branch, and the highest state office in Arizona. The Governor is popularly elected every four years by a plurality and is limited to two consecutive terms. The same individual may not be elected governor again until one complete gubernatorial term has passed.

As of May 2015, Arizona is one of 23 Republican state government trifectas.

Current officer

The 22nd and current governor of Arizona is Jan Brewer, a Republican. She was the elected Secretary of State in 2009, when Democratic Governor Janet Napolitiano resigned to join the Obama cabinet. Brewer served the remainder of Napolitano's term and ran for the governorship in 2010. She won the midterms and took office in January of 2011.

Before becoming governor, Brewer served as Arizona Secretary of State from 2003 to 2009. She was a member of the Arizona State Senate from 1986 to 1996; during her tenure, she served as majority whip from 1992 to 1996. Prior to her election to the Senate, Brewer served in the Arizona House of Representatives from 1982 to 1986. She began her political career as a member of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors. Brewer and her husband, John, raised three children, one of whom died of cancer in 2007.[2]


The Constitution of Arizona establishes the office of the governor in Article V, the Executive.

Arizona Constitution, Article V, Section 1:

The executive department shall consist of the governor, secretary of state, state treasurer, attorney general, and superintendent of public instruction...


Current Governors
Gubernatorial Elections
Current Lt. Governors
Lt. Governor Elections
Breaking news

Under Article V, Section 2, the governor must be at least 25 years old, a qualified voter in Arizona, and have been both an American citizen for ten years and a resident of Arizona for a minimum of five years on election day.

Arizona Constitution, Article V, Section 2:

No person shall be eligible to any of the offices mentioned in section 1 of this article except a person of the age of not less than twenty-five years, who shall have been for ten years next preceding his election a citizen of the United States, and for five years next preceding his election a citizen of Arizona.


See also: Gubernatorial election cycles by state
See also: Election of governors

Per Article 5, Section 1 (Version 2) of the state constitution, Arizona elects governors during federal midterm election years (e.g. 2006, 2010, 2014). The gubernatorial inauguration is always set for the first Monday in January following the election. Thus, January 3, 2011 and January 5, 2015 are inaugural days.

Originally, Article 5, Section 1 of the Arizona Constitution called for the legislature to decide the election in the case of a tie vote. The procedure was changed with the passage of Proposition 107 in 1992, which calls for a second election following a tie. If no candidate receives a plurality of the votes in the second election, the state legislature chooses between the two candidates.

Arizona Constitution, Article 5, Section 1 (Version 2)

A. The executive department shall consist of the governor, secretary of state, state treasurer, attorney general, and superintendent of public instruction, each of whom shall hold office for a term of four years beginning on the first Monday of January, 1971 next after the regular general election in 1970.

B. The person having a majority of the votes cast for the office voted for shall be elected. If no person receives a majority of the votes cast for the office, a second election shall be held as prescribed by law between the persons receiving the highest and second highest number of votes cast for the office. The person receiving the highest number of votes at the second election for the office is elected, but if the two persons have an equal number of votes for the office, the two houses of the legislature at its next regular session shall elect forthwith, by joint ballot, one of such persons for said office.

Term limits

See also: States with gubernatorial term limits

Arizona governors are restricted to two consecutive terms in office, after which they must wait one term before being eligible to run again.

Arizona Constitution, Article 5 Section 1 Version 2

No member of the executive department shall hold that office for more than two consecutive terms. This limitation on the number of terms of consecutive service shall apply to terms of office beginning on or after January 1, 1993. No member of the executive department after serving the maximum number of terms, which shall include any part of a term served, may serve in the same office until out of office for no less than one full term.

Partisan composition

The chart below shows the partisan breakdown of Arizona State Governors from 1992-2013.
Governor of Arizona Partisanship.PNG


See also: How gubernatorial vacancies are filled

Details of vacancy appointments are addressed under Article 5, Section 6 of the state constitution.

As Arizona is one of the six U.S. states with no lieutenant governor, the vacancy rules for the governor's office are somewhat more complex than other states. In the event that the governor is unable to discharge the office for any reason, the Arizona Secretary of State succeeds if two conditions are met; the Secretary of State must be serving as an elected officer and must meet the requirements to hold the governorship.

If either of those criteria does not hold, then the Attorney General of Arizona, the Treasurer of Arizona, and the State Superintendent of Public Instruction are, in descending order, the next in line to succeed the governor, subject to the same criteria as the Secretary of State.

Legally, taking the governor's oath of office is treated as an official resignation from the previous office held. Whenever the Secretary of State or any other officer becomes the Governor, he or she has the full powers and emoluments of the office and serves until the next election.

The same line of succession holds when disability or absence means the governor is temporarily unable to discharge the office.



The governor has a line-item veto on money appropriations, but otherwise the veto power and procedure is the same as for the president of the United States. However, he cannot veto emergency measures or bills that were voted for by the people in a referendum.

The governor is the commander of the state's National Guard except when it is placed under federal control.

He may call the legislature into extraordinary session and must appear before the legislature at least once during each session to deliver a "State of the State" address, commenting on Arizona's political and economic situation and laying out his policies for the coming year.

Other duties and privileges of the office, a number of which are enumerated in Article 5, Section 4 of the state constitution include:

  • ensuring all laws of Arizona are faithfully upheld
  • transacting all state business within the executive branch, including ordering reports and information from other executive officers
  • granting reprieves, commutation, and pardons, after convictions, for all offenses except treason and cases of impeachment
  • approving, or vetoing, all bills passed by the legislature
  • appointing someone to fill vacancies in all state offices where a manner for filling a vacancy is not already provided for by law
  • issuing, signing, and sealing all commissions granted by the state and delivering them to Secretary of State, who will attest to them


Note: Ballotpedia's state executive officials project researches state official websites for information that describes the divisions (if any exist) of a state executive office. That information for the Governor of Arizona has not yet been added. After extensive research we were unable to identify any relevant information on state official websites. If you have any additional information about this office for inclusion on this section and/or page, please email us.

State budget

The budget for the Governor's Office in Fiscal Year 2012 was $6,788,600.[3]


See also: Comparison of gubernatorial salaries and Compensation of state executive officers


In 2013, the governor's salary remained at $95,000.[4]


In 2012, the governor was paid an estimated $95,000. This figure comes from the Council of State Governments.


In 2010, the governor received compensation in the amount of $95,000[5], the 44th highest gubernatorial salary in America. Per Article 6, Section 33 of the state constitution, the legislature may name a commission, of five appointed members, at least two of whom must be private citizens, to consider changes to the governor's salary.

Historical officeholders

Note: Ballotpedia's state executive officials project researches state official websites for chronological lists of historical officeholders. That information for the Governor of Arizona has not yet been added because the information was unavailable on the relevant state official websites, or we are currently in the process of formatting the list for this office. If you have any additional information about this office for inclusion on this section and/or page, please email us.

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Contact information

Governor of Arizona
1700 West Washington
Phoenix, Arizona 85007

Telephone: (602) 542-4331
Toll Free: 1-(800) 253-0883
Fax: (602) 542-1381


Partisan balance 1992-2013

Who Runs the States Project
See also: Ballotpedia:Who Runs the States and Ballotpedia:Who Runs the States, Arizona
Partisan breakdown of the Arizona governorship from 1992-2013

From 1992-2013, there were Democratic governors in office for 6 years while there were Republican governors in office for 16 years, including the last 11. Arizona was under Republican trifectas for the last five years of the study period.

Across the country, there were 493 years of Democratic governors (44.82%) and 586 years of Republican governors (53.27%) from 1992-2013.

Over the course of the 22-year study, state governments became increasingly more partisan. At the outset of the study period (1992), 18 of the 49 states with partisan legislatures had single-party trifectas and 31 states had divided governments. In 2013, only 13 states have divided governments, while single-party trifectas held sway in 36 states, the most in the 22 years studied.

The chart below shows the partisan composition of the Office of the Governor of Arizona, the Arizona State Senate and the Arizona House of Representatives from 1992-2013. Partisan composition of Arizona state government(1992-2013).PNG

See also

External links