Senate approves lieutenant governor reform legislation

HARRISBURG – Today, the Senate approved bipartisan legislation with a vote of 50-0 to reform the way the lieutenant governor is elected in Pennsylvania. 

Senate Bill 761 would amend the state’s constitution to allow gubernatorial candidates to select their running mate subsequent to the primary election.  This bill will require governor and lieutenant governor candidates to first campaign together and then, once elected, work together as a team with a shared vision.  This is not a difficult concept – it’s simple common sense.  The goal is teamwork and cooperation.

Senator David G. Argall (R-Berks/Schuylkill), the prime sponsor of the bill, noted that this type of change to the current election process allows for better leadership and collaboration.  “The very troubled relationship between the governor and the lieutenant governor is no secret to any of us.  The state of Pennsylvania shouldn’t continue to be stuck with the current dysfunctional system that we now see on the second floor of the capitol.,” said Argall. 

Under this legislation, the state’s Constitution would be amended to require gubernatorial candidates to select their running mate after the primary election – subject to the approval of their state committees – which is a process very similar to how our presidential candidates have selected their running mates for a long, long time. The bill will now move to the House of Representatives for consideration. The earliest it could go into effect is 2022.  Should the measure pass, Pennsylvania would join thirteen other states that allow the candidate for governor to select the candidate for lieutenant governor. 


Contact: Mary Beth Dougherty

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