Resign-to-run law

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Resign-to-run laws require officeholders to resign from their current office in order to run for another. Nationwide, five states have resign-to-run laws--Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, and Texas.[1]



Title 38, Article 6, Section 296 of the Arizona Revised Statutes states:

A. Except during the final year of the term being served, no incumbent of a salaried elective office, whether holding by election or appointment, may offer himself for nomination or election to any salaried local, state or federal office.


Title IX, Chapter 99, Section 99.012 of the Florida Statues states:

(3)(a) No officer may qualify as a candidate for another state, district, county, or municipal public office if the terms or any part thereof run concurrently with each other without resigning from the office he or she presently holds. (b)The resignation is irrevocable...(7)Nothing contained in subsection (3) relates to persons holding any federal office or seeking the office of President or Vice President.


Article II, Section II, Paragraph IV of the Georgia Constitution states:

The office of any state, county, or municipal elected official shall be declared vacant upon such elected official qualifying, in a general primary or general election, or special primary or special election, for another state, county, or municipal elective office or qualifying for the House of Representatives or the Senate of the United States if the term of the office for which such official is qualifying for begins more than 30 days prior to the expiration of such official's present term of office.


Article II, Section 7 of the Hawaii Constitution states:

Any elected public officer shall resign from that office before being eligible as a candidate for another public office, if the term of the office sought begins before the end of the term of the office held.

In Cobb v. State by Watanabe the Hawaii Supreme Court clarified Section 7:

The question raised by this original proceeding is whether article II, section 7 of the Hawaii State Constitution requires Plaintiff Steve Cobb to resign his State Senate seat in order to become a candidate for the United States House of Representatives...We cannot say with any certainty that the drafters of article II, section 7 intended for it to apply to candidates for federal offices. In view of the uncertainty, we conclude that Cobb should not have to resign from the State Senate in order to run for Congress.


Article 16, Section 65 of the Texas Constitution states:

(a) This section applies to the following offices: District Clerks; County Clerks; County Judges; Judges of the County Courts at Law, County Criminal Courts, County Probate Courts and County Domestic Relations Courts; County Treasurers; Criminal District Attorneys; County Surveyors; County Commissioners; Justices of the Peace; Sheriffs; Assessors and Collectors of Taxes; District Attorneys; County Attorneys; Public Weighers; and Constables.

(b) If any of the officers named herein shall announce their candidacy, or shall in fact become a candidate, in any General, Special or Primary Election, for any office of profit or trust under the laws of this State or the United States other than the office then held, at any time when the unexpired term of the office then held shall exceed one year and 30 days, such announcement or such candidacy shall constitute an automatic resignation of the office then held, and the vacancy thereby created shall be filled pursuant to law in the same manner as other vacancies for such office are filled.

*Note: In 2011, Texas voters approved Proposition 10 amending this section. The text above reflects these changes.