Nation’s governors issue 1,514 executive orders in 2023, fewer than 2022

The nation’s governors issued 1,514 executive orders in 2023. In comparison, they issued 1,575 executive orders in 2022.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) led the field with 525, followed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) with 242 and New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) with 145. Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy (R) issued the fewest executive orders (zero) in 2023.

Governors use executive orders to manage executive branch operations. In 2023, governors issued an average of 29 executive orders per week. This figure was less than the 2022 weekly average of 30.

Georgia and Florida led in the number of executive orders issued for two reasons: unlike most states, in Georgia, the governor uses executive orders to appoint and reappoint members of state boards and judges. In Florida, also unlike most states, the governor uses executive orders for state attorney executive assignments.

Governors in 17 states issued fewer than five orders in 2023. In states with a Republican trifecta, governors issued 966 orders, while governors in states with a Democratic trifecta issued 389. A trifecta is when one political party holds the governorship and majorities in both chambers of the state legislature. In states where neither party holds trifecta control, governors issued 159 orders.