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Tuesday, March 26 , 2019, 2:32 pm | Partly Cloudy 63º


Maldonado Named to Lieutenant Governor’s Post

Schwarzenegger appoints former Santa Maria mayor to fill remainder of Garamendi's term

State Sen. Abel Maldonado, R-Santa Maria, will be named to the vacant lieutenant governor’s job, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said Monday.

Maldonado, 42, has represented the Central Coast in Sacramento for 11 years, six of them in the Assembly before being elected to the Senate in 2004. In 2006, he sought the Republican nomination for secretary of state but lost in the primary to now-Sen. Tony Strickland, R-Moorpark. He is a former Santa Maria mayor and graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

One of Schwarzenegger’s few Republican allies in the Legislature, Maldonado has often taken positions at odds with his party’s legislative priorities. He provided the key vote earlier this year as Schwarzenegger and Democratic legislators pushed through a $14 billion tax increase to help reverse California’s $42 billion budget deficit. Officials revealed last week that the state is facing a $21 billion deficit next year.

Schwarzenegger made the announcement at a taping of The Jay Leno Show on Monday.

If confirmed by the Legislature, Maldonado will replace Democrat John Garamendi, who was elected to Congress earlier this month.

Noozhawk publisher Bill Macfadyen can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk.

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