Our second report on the nation’s worst governors includes 18 — six of whom are the worst of the lot, six others whose conduct raises serious questions about their leadership, and six others who engaged in some action suspect enough to suggest their decisions merit close scrutiny.


Some governors on the list essentially turned their authority and regulatory agendas over to special interests. Others abused their office in return for gifts and campaign contributions. Many appointed donors to key positions and gutted transparency measures. All failed to live up to the public trust.


Until publishing its first report on the nation’s worst governors in 2010, CREW primarily focused on the ethics of federal government officials. CREW chose to look at governors because their actions have a major impact on public welfare, but state ethics issues often escape attention.


Now, with Washington mired in partisan gridlock, much of the legislative action takes place at the state level. As a result, it is critical that governors’ conduct be beyond reproach.