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2 years
No term limits
8 years

Governor Term Limits by State 2024

Governor Term Limits by State 2024

States With No Term Limits

Fourteen states do not have any term limits. These include Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin. The lack of term limits does not mean that the office of the governor can rule without a democratic opposition, as this would largely be against the constitution and the primary principles that make the U.S. one of the greatest free democratic nations in the world.

A term is much like the term of the President, meaning that it is limited to four years before an election. The fact that makes it unlimited is that the same governor can be elected past the traditional two-term limit, meaning that if they have a strong platform that adheres to the wants and needs of its citizens, they can be successful for many terms to come. It is notable that although New Hampshire and Vermont have no limit on how long the governor can stay in office, terms are limited to two years instead of four.

States With Consecutive Term Limits

There are many states that mimic the federal rules of the constitution which govern the office of the president and his/her team. In Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Main, Maryland, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virginia, the governor can run for two consecutive four-year terms if they are wanted.

Virginia is the only state that does not allow a governor to serve consecutive terms. The Governor of Virginia is the most restricted in office, as they are unable to run for reelection - even if they were successful in serving their state for a four-year period. This ban on a second consecutive term has largely been disputed, as it can create problems with leadership even after a great display of leadership.

States With Time-Based Term Limits

Other states have two-term limits, but require them not to be served consecutively. Indiana and Oregon also have adopted a rule that the governor must take a one-term pause in between elections, with the office of the governor of Montana and Wyoming needing a two-year pause in between terms.

Finally, other states such as Arkansas, California, Delaware, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, and Oklahoma all allow two terms a lifetime, regardless if it is consecutive or a pause. While it is a normal occurrence for presidents to run for two consecutive terms, the federal rules closely resemble these states - as a President can run for two terms in a lifetime if one of the terms resulted in a loss. This can be seen most recently with Donald Trump running for office in 2024, after his unsuccessful re-election campaign in 2020.

Governor Term Limits by State 2024

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Governor Term Limit in Years
Alabama2 yearsconsecutive
Alaska2 yearsconsecutive
Arizona2 yearsconsecutive
Arkansas2 yearslifetime
California2 yearslifetime
Colorado2 yearsconsecutive
ConnecticutNo term limits
Delaware2 yearslifetime
District of ColumbiaNo term limits
Florida2 yearsconsecutive
Georgia2 yearsconsecutive
Hawaii2 yearsconsecutive
IdahoNo term limits
IllinoisNo term limits
Indiana8 years8 out of 12 yrs.
IowaNo term limits
Kansas2 yearsconsecutive
Kentucky2 yearsconsecutive
Louisiana2 yearsconsecutive
Maine2 yearsconsecutive
Maryland2 yearsconsecutive
MassachusettsNo term limits
Michigan2 yearslifetime
MinnesotaNo term limits
Mississippi2 yearslifetime
Missouri2 yearslifetime
Montana8 years8 out of 16 yrs.
Nebraska2 yearsconsecutive
Nevada2 yearslifetime
New HampshireNo term limits
New Jersey2 yearsconsecutive
New Mexico2 yearsconsecutive
New YorkNo term limits
North Carolina2 yearsconsecutive
North DakotaNo term limits
Ohio2 yearsconsecutive
Oklahoma2 yearslifetime
Oregon8 years8 out of 12 yrs.
Pennsylvania2 yearsconsecutive
Rhode Island2 yearsconsecutive
South Carolina2 yearsconsecutive
South Dakota2 yearsconsecutive
Tennessee2 yearsconsecutive
TexasNo term limits
UtahNo term limits
VermontNo term limits
VirginiaNo term limitsconsecutive
WashingtonNo term limits
West Virginia2 yearsconsecutive
WisconsinNo term limits
Wyoming8 years8 out of 16 yrs.
showing: 51 rows