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Schwarzenegger names new lieutenant governor [Updated]

State Sen. Abel Maldonado, a moderate Republican from Santa Maria who has parted with his caucus on key votes at the request of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, has been chosen by Schwarzenegger to be the next lieutenant governor.

Schwarzenegger made the announcement today at a taping of "The Jay Leno Show."

If confirmed by the Legislature, Maldonado would replace John Garamendi, a Walnut Grove Democrat who was recently elected to Congress.

[Updated 6 p.m.: The governor called Maldonado “a terrific, loyal man that has worked very hard in public service.  But he’s also into bipartisanship and post-partisanship, so he can cross the aisle.

"He makes decisions based on what’s best for the people rather than what’s best for the party," Schwarzenegger said. "He has helped us...pass a budget, which was very important.”

An earlier version of this post stated that Maldonado's appointment must be confirmed by the state Senate. He must be approved by the Assembly as well.]

-- Evan Halper in Sacramento

Comments () | Archives (10)

How can someone so mediocre rise so high? (I know, see George W. Bush for a previous example.) I have followed Maldonado since he first became an Assemblyman in his Central Coast district, and I have been unimpressed. And this complicates the campaign of State Sen. Dean Florez (D-Shafter) for Lt. Governor. Florez is a much more intelligent (UCLA and Harvard Business School) and effective legislator than Maldonado. If Schwarzenegger had any ethics, he would have nominated a moderate Democrat to replace the Democrat elected by the voters.

Yet another example of the cronyism which is infecting and destroying this state. It has infected both parties to the point that they lack any integrity.

Maldonado is the senator who got the democrats to agree to put open primaries on the ballot in exchange for voting to pass the budget earlier this year. The measure goes before voters next year.

Pathetic. We get a turncoat who voted to steal our money as a Lt. Governon.

How wonderful this news is!

The Democrat Governator appointing another Democrat as the Lieutenant Governator.

I wish both those buttheads would stop calling themselves Republicans. They are FAR FROM IT!!

Business as usual in Sacramento. Corruption here, corruption there, corruption everywhere!


I was wondering what would happen to this trader, the person (calling him a man would be a disservice to real men) who turned his back on those who elected the person and struck a deal to raise taxes. Now we get to see how high that deal was struck. If the person were not in politics maybe the person could be a waitress at a restaurant, as that is about the capacity of this person. Good riddance Abel, if you were a man you would not accept this bribery from the governor.

The Gov and Lt Gov are the people that either sign or reject what our state legislature puts in front of them. They are hardly to blame, except maybe thinking they could slow down the Democrat run steamroller that has bankrupted the state and run off many of our businesses to elsewhere with all of the bureaucracy and high taxes. I doubt if very many of them ever owned a real business to see what it would be like to balance the books, meet payroll and pay taxes.

Big surprise. What else can we expect from a sold out politician than picking another politician who has sold out?

bad decesion. this guy is anti marriage. Another poor choice. What can't we get some real leaders in this country. Another pelosi type person.

Has anyone deal with him and his wife's perchance for traffic violations?


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