Kottkamp Would Be Governor for One Day
Lt. Governor Jeff Kottkamp may become Governor of Florida... at least for one day.
That's because if Charlie Crist is successful in his Senatorial bid he will be sworn in on January 3, 2011.
However, Florida’s governor does not take office until the following day.
Since Florida law prevents Crist from holding two offices, he will be forced to resign as Governor on January 3. Thus, Kottkamp will be elevated to the Governor's post for at least one day.
Kottkamp’s tenure would not be unprecedented. In 1987, Wayne Mixson served as Florida Governor for three days following the election of Bob Graham to the U.S. Senate in November of 1986. Mixson’s portrait still hangs in the capitol building as our state's thirty-ninth governor.
Another short-tenure governor is Democrat Buddy MacKay, who was briefly the forty-second Governor of Florida following the death of Lawton Chiles on December 12, 1998. MacKay had previously lost the election to Jeb Bush and handed over the office to Bush in January of 1999.
Of course, Senator Martinez could decide to resign his seat before his term is up... perhaps even before the election, allowing Charlie Crist to appoint himself to the seat.