Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 24.2. Elections
Chapter 2. Federal, Commonwealth, and Local Officers
9/25/2021

Article 3. Statewide Offices: Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General.

§ 24.2-210. Election and term of Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General.

The qualified voters of the Commonwealth shall elect the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General at the general election in November 1997, and every fourth year thereafter for terms of four years, to commence on the Saturday after the second Wednesday in January following their election.

The person having the highest number of votes for each office shall be declared elected. If two or more have the highest and an equal number of votes for an office, one of them shall be chosen for the office by a majority of the total membership of the General Assembly.

Code 1950, §§ 24-148, 24-149; 1962, c. 536; 1970, c. 462, §§ 24.1-80, 24.1-81; 1971, Ex. Sess., cc. 119, 131; 1993, c. 641.

§ 24.2-211. Discharge of duties when office of Governor is vacant or Governor is disabled.

When the Governor-elect is disqualified, resigns, or dies following his election but prior to taking office, the Lieutenant Governor-elect shall succeed to the office of Governor for the full term. When the Governor-elect fails to assume office for any other reason, the Lieutenant Governor-elect shall serve as acting Governor.

Whenever the Governor transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Delegates his written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Lieutenant Governor as acting Governor.

Whenever the Attorney General, the President pro tempore of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Delegates, or a majority of the total membership of the General Assembly, transmit to the Clerk of the Senate and the Clerk of the House of Delegates their written declaration that the Governor is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Lieutenant Governor shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as acting Governor.

Thereafter, when the Governor transmits to the Clerk of the Senate and the Clerk of the House of Delegates his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Attorney General, the President pro tempore of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Delegates, or a majority of the total membership of the General Assembly, transmit within four days to the Clerk of the Senate and the Clerk of the House of Delegates their written declaration that the Governor is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon the General Assembly shall decide the issue, convening within forty-eight hours for that purpose, if not already in session. If within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter declaration or, if the General Assembly is not in session, within twenty-one days after the General Assembly is required to convene, the General Assembly determines by three-fourths vote of the elected membership of each house of the General Assembly that the Governor is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Lieutenant Governor shall become Governor; otherwise, the Governor shall resume the powers and duties of his office.

In the case of the removal of the Governor from office or in the case of his disqualification, death or resignation, the Lieutenant Governor shall become Governor.

If a vacancy exists in the office of Lieutenant Governor when the Lieutenant Governor is to succeed to the office of Governor or to serve as acting Governor, the Attorney General, if he is eligible to serve as Governor, shall succeed to the office of Governor for the unexpired term or serve as acting Governor. If the Attorney General is ineligible to serve as Governor, the Speaker of the House of Delegates, if he is eligible to serve as Governor, shall succeed to the office of Governor. If a vacancy exists in the office of the Speaker of the House of Delegates or if the Speaker of the House of Delegates is ineligible to serve as Governor, the House of Delegates shall convene and fill the vacancy.

Code 1950, § 24-150; 1960, c. 488; 1970, c. 462, § 24.1-82; 1971, Ex. Sess., c. 165; 1993, c. 641.

§ 24.2-212. Discharge of duties when office of Lieutenant Governor vacant.

When a vacancy occurs in the office of Lieutenant Governor, the duties of that office shall be discharged by the President pro tempore of the Senate, but he shall not by reason thereof be deprived of his right to act and vote as a member of the Senate.

Code 1950, § 24-152; 1970, c. 462, § 24.1-84; 1973, c. 30; 1993, c. 641.

§ 24.2-213. Filling vacancy in office of Attorney General.

If a vacancy occurs in the office of Attorney General during the session of the General Assembly, the General Assembly shall fill the vacancy by a majority vote of the total membership. If a vacancy occurs during a recess of the General Assembly, the Governor shall appoint a successor to serve for the remainder of the unexpired term or until the end of thirty days after the commencement of the next session of the General Assembly, whichever happens first. At that next session, the General Assembly shall fill the vacancy by election by a majority vote of the total membership for the unexpired portion of the term.

Code 1950, § 24-153; 1970, c. 462, § 24.1-85; 1993, c. 641.