At a press conference in Los Angeles on Nov. 24, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced that he has nominated Sen. Abel Maldonado as California’s lieutenant governor. If confirmed by the Legislature, the Santa Maria Republican will replace exiting Lt. Governor John Garamendi, who was recently elected to Congress.
As lieutenant governor, Maldonado will serve as acting governor when the governor is out of the state and as president of the state Senate. He will also sit on the University of California Board of Regents, the California State University board of trustees, and the California State Lands Commission.
At the press conference, Schwarzenegger said he has always felt a connection with Maldonado, and that he has complete confidence in the senator’s abilities to serve as lieutenant governor.
“This is like a marriage. The senator and I have been soul mates since the beginning,” Schwarzenegger said. “The more I got to know him, the more I got to like him—not because he was a Republican or because he crossed the aisle.”
Alluding to past political disagreements, Schwarzenegger said: “I compare it to a marriage because we all have differences with our spouses. It’s never perfect all the time.”