Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey

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The New Jersey Lieutenant Governor took office for the first time in January 2010 following conjoint election with the governor of New Jersey. The position was created as the result of a Constitutional amendment to the New Jersey State Constitution passed by the voters on November 8, 2005 and effective as of January 17, 2006.

The first, and current, Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey is Republican Kim Gaudagno, who won her primary and then ran successfully with Governor Chris Christie.

The Governor shall appoint the Lieutenant Governor to serve as the head of a principal department or other executive or administrative agency of State government, or delegate to the Lieutenant Governor duties of the office of Governor, or both. The Governor shall not appoint the Lieutenant Governor to serve as Attorney General. The Lieutenant Governor shall in addition perform such other duties as may be provided by law. (Article V, Section I, paragraph 10)

Need for a Lt. Governor

Justifications for the creation of a lieutenant governor position focused on three primary issues:

  • Unelected / Nonrepresentative Successor - The Senate president is chosen by the members of the New Jersey Senate, and was not elected by voters statewide to be a potential gubernatorial successor, those eligible to become senate president are elected to the senate by the voters in only one of the forty legislative districts statewide.
  • Separation of Powers - In a state with an extremely powerful position of Governor, having the senate president assume the role of "Acting Governor" is a breach of the separation of powers of the executive and legislative branches.
  • Political party disparity - There is no guarantee that the senate president (or the lieutenant governor) will follow the legislative platform of his predecessor. As the senate president may not even be from the same party, there is even greater concern that the policies of the "Acting Governor" might be in conflict with those of the preceding governor.

New line of succession

The amendment provides a new order of succession:

In the event of a vacancy in the office of Governor resulting from the death, resignation or removal of a Governor in office, or the death of a Governor-elect, or from any other cause, the Lieutenant Governor shall become Governor, until a new Governor is elected and qualifies.



In the event of simultaneous vacancies in both the offices of Governor and Lieutenant Governor resulting from any cause, the President of the Senate shall become Governor until a new Governor or Lieutenant Governor is elected and qualifies. In the event that there is a vacancy in the office of Senate President, or the Senate President declines to become Governor, then the Speaker of the General Assembly shall become Governor until a new Governor or Lieutenant Governor is elected and qualifies. In the event that there is a vacancy in the office of Speaker of the General Assembly, or if the Speaker declines to become Governor, then the functions, powers, duties and emoluments of the office shall devolve for the time being upon such officers and in the order of succession as may be provided by law, until a new Governor or Lieutenant Governor is elected and qualifies. (Article V, Section I, paragraph 6)

Contact information

None.

See also

External links

  • No official website.

References

Portions of this article were adapted from Wikipedia.

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