Because lieutenant governors are elected separately in many states, they don't always share the political affiliation of the sitting governor.
If Sen. Barack Obama picks a leading Democratic governor as his running mate, at least three Democratic governors would have to leave their states to Republicans, who are now second in command, says Stateline.org reporter Pamela M. Prah.
A Sen. John McCain presidency (with a governor as VP) could mean at least one Republican governorship going Democratic, Prah says.
From Prah's article:
While many people assume that lieutenant governors are of the same party as the state's No. 1, that is not always the case. In 18 states, voters elect the governor and lieutenant governor separately, a situation that can lead to a split ticket. Democrats currently hold 28 governorships to 22 for the Republicans.It's unlikely either presidential nominee will pick a fellow U.S. senator as his running mate, so expect a shakeup in the nation's governor's ranks.
And let's not even talk about what would happen if Gov. Ed Rendell ends up on a Barack Obama ticket. The prospect of a soon-to-be-78-year-old Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll taking over as governor of Pennsylvania is keeping many in the Keystone State (Rendell included) awake at night.
Prah also notes that governors often leave their states to take jobs with a new administration in Washington, D.C.
From her article:
President Bush turned to four of his fellow Republican governors in his first term: Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge, sworn in as the country’s first homeland security advisor in 2001; Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, who was named secretary of Health and Human Services; New Jersey Gov. Christie Todd Whitman, who became administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2001 and who was succeeded in 2003 by Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt, who later became secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.Read the full story, "Veep stakes could shake up governorships" at Stateline.org