<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >

Despite the tremendous formal powers that go with the job, being governor is still personally and professionally challenging. The demands of the job are likely to restrict time with family and require forgoing privacy. In addition, governors will often face circumstances beyond their control. For instance, the state legislature may include a majority of members who do not share the governor’s party affiliation. This can make working together more challenging and lead to less cooperation during the legislative session. Another challenge for governors is the plural executive, which refers to the fact that many state officials, such as the lieutenant governor, attorney general, and secretary of state are elected independently from the governor; hence, the governor has no direct control over them the way a president might have sway over U.S. executive officials. Governors can also face spending restrictions due to the economic climate in their state. They may have to make unpopular decisions that weaken their support among voters. The federal government can mandate that states perform some function without giving them any funds to do so. Finally, as we saw above, governors can be swept up in crises or natural disasters they did not anticipate and could not have foreseen. This can drain their energy and hamper their ability to generate good public policy.

Rosenthal, The Best Job in Politics; Exploring How Governors Succeed as Policy Leaders.

The functions of state legislatures

State legislatures serve three primary functions. They perform a lawmaking function by researching, writing, and passing legislation. Members represent their districts and work to meet requests for help from citizens within it. Finally, legislatures perform an oversight function for the executive branch.

All state representatives and senators serve on committees that examine, research, investigate, and vote on legislation that relates to the committee’s purpose, such as agriculture, transportation, or education. The number of bills introduced in any given session varies. Some state legislature s have more restrictive rules concerning the number of bills any one member can sponsor. Legislators get ideas for bills from lobbyists of various types of interest groups, ranging from corporate groups to labor unions to advocacy organizations. Ideas for bills also come from laws passed in other state legislatures, from policy that diffuses from the federal government, from constituents or citizens in the officeholder’s district who approach them with problems they would like to see addressed with new laws, and from their own personal policy agenda, which they brought to office with them. Finally, as we explored previously, legislators also work with the governor’s agenda in the course of each legislative session, and they must pass a budget for their state either every year or every two years.

Most bills die in committee and never receive a second or third reading on the floor of the legislature. Lawmaking requires frequent consensus, not just among the legislators in a given house but also between the two chambers. In order for a bill to become law, it must pass through both the state house and the state senate in identical form before going to the governor’s desk for final signature.

Questions & Answers

how does one separate from State or government
Joni Reply
I do Not understand well, so if the abachis want. To seperate, acording to this declaration every one shoud Support them
Ich Reply
what is liberty
Luna Reply
You feel free and you decide and do and achieve the right for you
Ich
was the Bill of rights a necessary addtion to the constitution?
noor Reply
So, if I'm clear a member of the Congress CANNOT live in the state they represent?
Jeremy Reply
what is government
Seth Reply
why is today's government so corrupt?
Julius Reply
what type of government does American practice?
Joshua Reply
what type of government does American practice
Joshua
Representative Democracy
Digital
Democratic Republic
Jeremy
what is communalism
Yarhere Reply
suppression of the people and their rights.
Julius
Help me understand this please. Looks ok please 🙏 🙏 please
debbie Reply
which political party has had the most sucess
Damion Reply
In what ways can the media change the way a citizen thinks about government?
Justin Reply
advertisement
Cowboy
subliminal messages through the converged technological devices. and sourced profiles
Joni
Which of the following is not an agent of political socialization?
Vanessa Reply
What is government
AHMED Reply
how is the legislative work ?
Abdurahim Reply
law making
Cowboy

Get the best American government course in your pocket!





Source:  OpenStax, American government. OpenStax CNX. Dec 05, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11995/1.15
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'American government' conversation and receive update notifications?

Ask