With gubernatorial races heating up in New Jersey and Virginia, the Eagleton Center on the American Governor, a unit of the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University-New Brunswick, released a report containing advice to help nominees for governor prepare for the possibility of victory.
Drawing on the experience and reflections of participants in previous transitions in New Jersey, From Candidate to Governor-Elect: Recommendations for Gubernatorial Transitions offers factors to think about and actions to take before the election as well as a checklist of what should be accomplished between the election and inauguration.
report, available online at governors.rutgers.edu/transitions, was made possible by a grant from The Fund for New Jersey.The
“It may seem at first presumptuous for a nominee to make specific plans for what he or she will do in the 10 weeks between being declared the winner on the evening of November 7 and being sworn in on January 16, but effective use of that transition period can greatly increase the likelihood of a relatively smooth and effective start for a new administration,” said John Weingart, associate director of the Eagleton Institute of Politics and director of the Eagleton Center on the American Governor, who co-authored the report. “For the nominees in New Jersey and Virginia, it is not too soon to be laying the groundwork,” he added.
The report, which includes recollections, advice and stories from former government officials, political operatives and transition team members, draws on dozens of interviews conducted for this project, as well as extensive material from the archives of the Eagleton Center on the American Governor. In addition to sections on what to do as a nominee, what to do as a governor-elect and several promises to avoid, the report also includes appendices with timelines of key dates in the transitions of the seven New Jersey elected governors from 1973 through 2009 as well as a list of executive orders issued in each of their first 100 days. Also provided are extensive excerpts from interviews with Governors Brendan Byrne, Thomas Kean, James Florio and Christine Todd Whitman.
“This report draws on our unique collection of resources about chief executives in the states to help future governors navigate the important, complicated and sometimes overlooked transition process,” noted Kristoffer Shields, co-author of the report, who is an assistant research professor at the Eagleton Institute of Politics, historian and the program manager at the Eagleton Center on the American Governor.