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California’s Lt. Gov. Makes History, Again

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Sacramento, CA — A woman has signed a bill into California state law for the first time in the state’s 171-year history.

Today, Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis signed two laws while filling in for Gov. Gavin Newsom. As we reported earlier here, he left the state on Wednesday night for a family vacation over spring break. State law requires Kounalakis to act as governor until Newsom returns.

The state Legislature passed a bill on Thursday that extended eviction protections, enacted earlier in the COVID pandemic, for some renters until the end of June. The law was set to expire today and, if not signed by Kounalakis, thousands of renters could have been evicted starting Friday.

While making history, Kounalakis stated, “I am humbled to step in as Acting Governor today and be part of history as the first woman in California to sign a bill into law.”

In 2018, Kounalakis was elected as California’s first female Lt. Governor. Stating that she felt a sense of history, she added, “I remain more determined than ever to ensure that while I may be the first to do so, I will certainly not be the last.”

Kounalakis is one of several women who could run for governor in 2026. The second bill she signed was related to elections.

  • Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis makes history as first woman to sign a bill into law in California