Lieutenant Governor of Texas
|Lieutenant Governor and President of the Senate of Texas|
since January 20, 2015
|Term length||Four years, no term limits|
|Inaugural holder||Albert Clinton Horton|
|Website||Office of the Lieutenant Governor|
The lieutenant governor of Texas is the second-highest executive office in the government of Texas, a state in the U.S. It is the second most powerful post in Texas government because its occupant controls the work of the Texas Senate and controls the budgeting process as a leader of the Legislative Budget Board.
Under the provisions of the Texas Constitution, the lieutenant governor is president of the Texas Senate. Unlike with most other states' senates and the U.S. Senate, the lieutenant governor regularly exercises this function rather than delegating it to the president pro tempore or a majority leader. By the rules of the Senate, the lieutenant governor establishes all special and standing committees, appoints all chairpersons and members, and assigns all Senate legislation to the committee of his choice. The lieutenant governor decides all questions of parliamentary procedure in the Senate. The lieutenant governor also has broad discretion in following Senate procedural rules.
The lieutenant governor is an ex officio member of several statutory bodies. These include the Legislative Budget Board, the Legislative Council, the Legislative Audit Committee, the Legislative Board and Legislative Council, which have considerable sway over state programs, the budget and policy. The lieutenant governor is also a member of the Legislative Redistricting Board (together with the speaker of the House, attorney general, comptroller, and land commissioner), which is charged with adopting a redistricting plan for the Texas House of Representatives, Texas Senate, or U.S. House of Representatives after the decennial census if the Legislature fails to do so.
In the case of a vacancy in the lieutenant governor's office, the Senate elects one of its members to act as President of the Senate until the next statewide office election, in effect becoming the lieutenant governor. A senator elected as presiding officer in this way retains their district seat and the voting privileges entailed with his Senate election. The lieutenant governor is sworn-in on the third Tuesday every four years, the same as the governor.
Dan Patrick has been the lieutenant governor of Texas since January 20, 2015.
The term of office was two years from 1846 to 1972. Voters then increased it to four years, effective for the 1974 election. 
The lieutenant governor assumes the powers of the governor of Texas when the governor is out of the state or otherwise unable to discharge the office. The lieutenant governor is elected separately from the governor, rather than on the same ticket; it is therefore possible for the governor and lieutenant governor to be from different political parties (which was the case during Governor George W. Bush's first term and also during Bill Clements's two non-consecutive terms). The lieutenant governor becomes the governor if the elected governor resigns, dies or is removed from office via impeachment and conviction. Former governor Rick Perry took office upon George W. Bush's resignation on December 21, 2000. Bush became US President on January 20, 2001. When Perry became lieutenant governor on 19 January 1999, he became the first Republican since Albert Jennings Fountain in 1873 to serve as lieutenant governor, and the first Republican to be elected as lieutenant governor since James W. Flanagan in 1869.
Compared to other lieutenant governors
Texas is one of the few states that vests significant power in the office of lieutenant governor, making it among the most influential. By contrast, the lieutenant governor position in other states has few (if any) legislative responsibilities, akin to the vice president of the United States. The consequence is that the governor of Texas is weaker than other states' governors.
Lieutenant Governors of Texas
Democratic (38) Republican (5)
|Image||Lt. Governor||Years in office||Governor(s) served under||Party|
|Albert Clinton Horton||May 2, 1846 – December 21, 1847||James Pinckney Henderson||Democratic|
|John Alexander Greer||December 21, 1847 – December 22, 1851||George Tyler Wood
Peter Hansborough Bell
|James W. Henderson||December 22, 1851 – November 23, 1853||Peter Hansborough Bell||Democratic|
|David Catchings Dickson||December 21, 1853 – December 21, 1855||Elisha M. Pease||Democratic|
|Hardin Richard Runnels||December 21, 1855 – December 21, 1857||Elisha M. Pease||Democratic|
|Francis Lubbock||December 21, 1857 – December 21, 1859||Hardin Richard Runnels||Democratic|
|Edward Clark||December 21, 1859 – March 16, 1861||Sam Houston||Democratic|
|John McClannahan Crockett||November 7, 1861 – November 5, 1863||Francis Lubbock||Democratic|
|Fletcher Stockdale||November 5, 1863 – June 17, 1865||Pendleton Murrah||Democratic|
|Vacant||June 17, 1865 – August 9, 1866||Fletcher Stockdale
Andrew Jackson Hamilton
|George Washington Jones||August 9, 1866 – July 30, 1867||James W. Throckmorton||Democratic|
|Vacant||July 30, 1867 – January 8, 1870||Elisha M. Pease||–|
|James W. Flanagan||January 8, 1870 – February 24, 1870||Edmund J. Davis||Republican|
|Vacant||February 24, 1870 – January 15, 1874||Edmund J. Davis||–|
|Richard B. Hubbard||January 15, 1874 – December 1, 1876||Vacant||Democratic|
|Vacant||December 1, 1876 – January 21, 1879||Richard B. Hubbard||–|
|Joseph Draper Sayers||January 21, 1879 – January 18, 1881||Oran Milo Roberts||Democratic|
|Leonidas Jefferson Storey||January 18, 1881 – January 16, 1883||Oran Milo Roberts||Democratic|
|Francis Marion Martin||January 16, 1883 – January 20, 1885||John Ireland||Democratic|
|Barnett Gibbs||January 20, 1885 – January 19, 1887||John Ireland||Democratic|
|Thomas Benton Wheeler||January 19, 1887 – January 21, 1891||Lawrence Sullivan Ross||Democratic|
|George C. Pendleton||January 21, 1891 – January 17, 1893||Lawrence Sullivan Ross||Democratic|
|Martin McNulty Crane||January 17, 1893 – January 15, 1895||Jim Hogg||Democratic|
|George Taylor Jester||January 15, 1895 – January 17, 1899||Charles Allen Culberson||Democratic|
|James Browning||January 17, 1899 – January 20, 1903||Joseph D. Sayers||Democratic|
|George D. Neal||January 20, 1903 – January 15, 1907||S. W. T. Lanham||Democratic|
|Asbury Bascom Davidson||January 15, 1907 – January 21, 1913||Thomas Mitchell Campbell
Oscar Branch Colquitt
|William Harding Mayes||January 21, 1913 – August 14, 1914||Oscar Branch Colquitt||Democratic|
|Vacant||August 14, 1914 – January 19, 1915||Oscar Branch Colquitt||–|
|William P. Hobby Sr.||January 19, 1915 – August 25, 1917||James E. Ferguson||Democratic|
|Vacant||August 25, 1917 – January 21, 1919||William P. Hobby||–|
|Willard Arnold Johnson||January 21, 1919 – January 18, 1921||William P. Hobby||Democratic|
|Lynch Davidson||January 18, 1921 – January 16, 1923||Pat Morris Neff||Democratic|
|Thomas Whitfield Davidson||January 16, 1923 – January 20, 1925||Pat Morris Neff||Democratic|
|Barry Miller||January 20, 1925 – January 20, 1931||Miriam A. Ferguson
|Edgar E. Witt||January 20, 1931 – January 15, 1935||Ross S. Sterling
Miriam A. Ferguson
|Walter Frank Woodul||January 15, 1935 – January 17, 1939||James V. Allred||Democratic|
|Coke R. Stevenson||January 17, 1939 – August 4, 1941||W. Lee O'Daniel||Democratic|
|Vacant||August 4, 1941 – January 19, 1943||Coke R. Stevenson||–|
|John Lee Smith||January 19, 1943 – January 21, 1947||Coke R. Stevenson
Beauford H. Jester
|Allan Shivers||January 21, 1947 – July 11, 1949||Beauford H. Jester||Democratic|
|Vacant||July 11, 1949 – January 16, 1951||Allan Shivers||–|
|Ben Ramsey||January 16, 1951 – September 18, 1961||Allan Shivers
|Vacant||September 18, 1961 – January 15, 1963||Price Daniel||–|
|Preston Smith||January 15, 1963 – January 21, 1969||John Connally||Democratic|
|Ben Barnes||January 21, 1969 – January 16, 1973||Preston Smith||Democratic|
|William P. Hobby Jr.||January 16, 1973 – January 15, 1991||Dolph Briscoe (Democratic)
Bill Clements (Republican)
Mark White (Democratic)
Bill Clements (Republican)
|Bob Bullock||January 15, 1991 – January 19, 1999||Ann Richards (Democratic)
George W. Bush (Republican)
|Rick Perry||January 19, 1999 – December 21, 2000||George W. Bush||Republican|
|Bill Ratliff||December 28, 2000 – January 21, 2003||Rick Perry||Republican|
|David Dewhurst||January 21, 2003 – January 20, 2015||Rick Perry||Republican|
|Dan Patrick||January 20, 2015 – present||Greg Abbott||Republican|
- ^ Lieutenant Governor from the Handbook of Texas Online
- ^ "Lieutenant Governors of Texas, 1846 - present".
- ^ Horton served as Governor pro tempore during James Pinckney Henderson's absence from May 19 to November 13, 1846.
- ^ Henderson vacated the office on November 23, 1853 to succeed Peter Hansborough Bell as Governor. Senate president pro tempore Taylor filled the vacancy for roughly a month before Dickson was sworn into office.
- ^ Jones was removed by General Philip Sheridan, commander of the Fifth Military District during Reconstruction and the office remained vacant until the 14th Legislature in 1874.
- ^ Flanagan was elected lieutenant governor in 1869 but was not inaugurated. He presided over the Provisional session, but left office after being selected as an at-large representative to the U.S. Congress. Due to this, Flanagan is often omitted from some lists of Lieutenant Governors.
- ^ Donald Campbell, Webster Flanagan, Albert Jennings Fountain, and Edward Bradford Pickett all served as ex officio Lieutenant Governors between Flanagan’s and Hubbard’s terms.
- ^ Senate president pro tempore Wells Thompson filled in for the vacancy.
- ^ Perry vacated the office when he succeeded George W. Bush as Governor of Texas on December 21, 2000.
- ^ Ratliff was chosen by the Texas Senate to finish the unexpired term due to the vacancy of Rick Perry's succession to the Governorship. Ratliff served until David Dewhurst was elected in 2002 and inaugurated on January 21, 2003.
- Legislative Reference Library of Texas
- Presiding Officers of the Texas Legislature, 1846–1982, Texas Legislative Council, Austin, Texas, August 1982.