General Election: State Officers

1789 to Present

State officers include governor, lieutenant governor, treasurer, secretary of state, auditor of accounts, and attorney general. The following election results are based on returns and canvasses of votes held by the State Archives and Records Administration (VSARA), with the exception of the pre-1813 results for governor. Those results are drawn from newspapers, Assembly Journals and Crockett's Vermont: The Green Mountain State. No returns have been found for some years prior to 1802.

The governor, lieutenant governor, treasurer, secretary of state, and auditor of accounts are constitutional officers. The former three officers have been popularly elected since 1778, while the secretary of state and auditor of accounts were elected by the General Assembly until a constitutional change effected in 1884 made them popularly elected. The office of auditor of accounts was first created by an act passed in 1790 and became a constitutional office in 1883.

The attorney general's office was established by a 1790 law which was repealed in 1797. The office was re-established by No. 57 of the Acts of 1904. During the 1790's the attorney general was elected by the General Assembly; since 1906 the attorney general has been popularly elected.

Vermont had annual elections until 1870, when they became biennial. Until 1915 elections were held in September, with terms of service running from October to October (with biennial terms, elections were held in even-numbered years). Since 1915 the biennial terms run from January to January of odd-numbered years, with elections being held in November of even-numbered years (starting in November, 1914).

Candidates for the offices of governor, lieutenant governor, and treasurer must receive a majority vote to win. If there is no majority candidate the General Assembly shall elect the officer from among the top three vote getters for that particular office.  Until the 1990's the majority requirement was also applied to the secretary of state, auditor of accounts, and attorney general. For more information, see Failure to Attain a Majority.

Party affiliations are included when known. It should be noted, however, that at least until 1836 assigning party affiliations is not an exact science.

This page was last updated: 2018-02-13