Vermont Lieutenant Governor | WAMC

Vermont Lieutenant Governor

Molly Gray
Molly Gray for Vermont/Facebook

On Tuesday night, Vermont voters elected Molly Gray as the state’s next Lieutenant Governor.  The current assistant attorney general had never run for office but garnered a number of high-profile endorsements including from Senator Patrick Leahy, Congressman Peter Welch, former Governor and Ambassador Madeline Kunin and former Governor Peter Shumlin.  She defeated Republican businessman Scott Milne, who had twice run for office, and the outcome between the two was the closest among the state’s top races. On Wednesday morning Molly Gray told WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley following the election results was a rollercoaster but a very special night.

Vermont Statehouse
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Vermonters continued a long tradition of electing a governor and lieutenant governor from opposite parties on Election Day. Bidding for a third term, Republican Governor Phil Scott soundly defeated his challenger, while a newcomer to politics will hold the second-highest state office.

Scott Milne (left) and Molly Gray are the major party candidates for Vermont Lieutenant Governor
Milne for Vermont - HopsonRoad/Stephen Flanders Molly Gray for Vermont/Facebook

Perhaps the closest and most contentious race in Vermont this year is for lieutenant governor.  The open position features a Republican who has mounted statewide campaigns before and a Democrat in her first run for office.

Scott Milne (left) and Molly Gray are the major party candidates for Vermont Lieutenant Governor
Milne for Vermont - HopsonRoad/Stephen Flanders Molly Gray for Vermont/Facebook

The closest race in Vermont’s general election is for Lieutenant Governor.  VPR/Vermont PBS hosted a debate Tuesday between Democrat Molly Gray and Republican Scott Milne during which the two major party candidates expressed distinct differences of opinion on what policies the state should implement.

Scott Milne (left) and Molly Gray are the major party candidates for Vermont Lieutenant Governor
Milne for Vermont - HopsonRoad/Stephen Flanders Molly Gray for Vermont/Facebook

The general election for Vermont Lieutenant Governor this fall will feature two candidates who have never held public office. The Democrat is running her first campaign while the GOP candidate is making a comeback bid after nearly winning the 2014 race for governor.

Former Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin
WAMC/Pat Bradley

Four Democrats and five Republicans are running for their party’s nomination for Vermont Lieutenant Governor. A Progressive candidate, Cris Ericson, is also running.

Scott Milne (file)
WAMC/Pat Bradley

A  Republican who ran unsuccessfully for Vermont governor in 2014 is running for lieutenant governor.

Debbie Ingram
Debbie Ingram for Vermont State Senate

In Vermont, the governor and lieutenant governor are elected separately and this year both races already have a number of Democratic candidates.  When current Lieutenant Governor Progressive David Zuckerman announced he would run for governor, several Democrats began running for lieutenant governor.  Among them is second-term Democratic Vermont state Senator Debbie Ingram of Williston. She tells WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley her skills and the opportunities the office presents are a great match.

Photo of Vermont Statehouse in winter
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Now that Vermont Lieutenant Governor David Zuckerman is officially running for governor, his decision is setting off a series of other political announcements.

Vermont Lieutenant Governor David Zuckerman
Pat Bradley/WAMC

This past week, Vermont Republican Governor Phil Scott celebrated his 100th day in office and outlined his accomplishments so far.  Vermonters elect the governor and lieutenant governor separately. David Zuckerman is a Progressive/Democrat in his first term as Lieutenant Governor.  During a break in Senate sessions, he told WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley that during his first 100 days he’s worked to get more people, especially youth, involved in the political process.

Vermont Lieutenant Governor-elect David Zuckerman
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Will the Vermont Legislature need to decide the state's next lieutenant governor? There appears to be some debate after the Secretary of State released the official canvass on Tuesday.

Vermont Statehouse
Photo by Pat Bradley

The Vermont Legislature will decide who will become the state's next lieutenant governor.

David Zuckerman
Vermont Legislature

The candidates and political parties held unity events Wednesday following the Vermont primary this week.  In the Lieutenant Governor’s race, the Democratic primary was won by a state senator from a third party.

Shap Smith
Photo by Ben Sarle/shapvt.com

Vermont House Speaker Shap Smith entered the race for governor last August.  But the Democrat withdrew in November after his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer.  Yesterday, Smith announced he will seek the Lieutenant Governor’s seat instead.

Photo of Vermont Statehouse in winter
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The middle of 2015 shook up Vermont’s political field.  At the beginning of June incumbent Democratic Governor Peter Shumlin made the announcement not to seek re-election. That resulted in a stream of candidates stepping forward to seek not only Vermont’s highest office, but the state’s second seat.

The Vermont Senate roster lists him as a Progressive, but David Zuckerman runs for office as a Democrat.  Thursday night he officially launched his campaign for Lieutenant Governor as a Democrat.  The second-term state Senator, an organic farmer by trade, will also seek the endorsement of the Progressive party.  Zuckerman tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley he is running for Lieutenant Governor because the position offers a number of opportunities to enhance work he has done in the legislature.

Garrett Graff

Vermonter Garrett Graff has worked in Washington D.C. for 13 years a journalist, most recently at Politico.  He is now moving back to his home state where he hopes to mount a campaign for Lieutenant Governor as a Democrat. But questions have emerged over whether he is even eligible to run under the state’s residency requirements. Graff explained to WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley why he decided to return and why he thinks he should be allowed on the ballot.

Garrett Graff

Home may be where the heart is, but does that adage extend to the ballot box? WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports some questions are being raised as to whether the latest potential Democratic candidate for Vermont lieutenant governor is even eligible to run.

courtesy office of Congressman Peter Welch

Former Vermont Lieutenant Governor, first lady and state Senator Barbara Snelling died Monday at the age of 87.  WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley has more on a woman being remembered as a Vermont icon.

Kesha for Lieutenant Governor/Facebook

When Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin decided not to run for re-election this past summer, a torrent of candidates stepped forward to seek that office — including the current lieutenant governor, Phil Scott, the only statewide elected Republican.  That means the state’s second highest office is also for the taking in 2016. A number of candidates are jumping in. Among the latest is Vermont House representative Kesha Ram, a Democrat from Burlington.  Ram tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley that she has the ideological, administrative and legislative background for the position.

Brandon Riker
Riker for Vermont

Despite being new on Vermont’s political scene, 28-year-old Democrat Brandon Riker has already raised more than $100,000 for his campaign for lieutenant governor.  He began thinking about running for office in January when the Shumlin administration pulled back its universal health proposal and committed to the race in May.  Riker tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley that he decided to run for lieutenant governor because it’s an office with great potential.

Vote sign
wikipedia commons

The Vermont Attorney General  has filed a civil lawsuit against the losing candidate in last fall’s Lieutenant Governor’s campaign.

Dean Corren
Dean Corren for Vermont Lieutenant Governor/Facebook

Dean Corren, a Progressive running for Vermont lieutenant governor, says he'll talk up his support for single-payer health care when he appears before the Democratic state committee.

Dean Corren
Dean Corren for Vermont Lieutenant Governor/Facebook

The Progressive candidate for Vermont lieutenant governor plans to go before Vermont Democrats this weekend to ask for their support.