I know this is somewhat insignificant, but I need help from anyone who has access to an AP Stylebook to settle a disagreement. Most of what I'm going on is my memory of AP style, and references I can find on the internet of someone else's interpretation of AP style. But I no longer have access to an AP Stylebook, and I'd like a direct reference, if I can get one.
When writing a newspaper article, and referencing a past governor, what is the proper honorific?
I was always under the impression that if the past governor (or president) completed their term of office, or retired from office, the proper reference was "Former Governor" and if that person resigned in disgrace or was recalled, etc, it was "Ex-Governor".
Example: "Ex-Governor Spitzer" or "Former Governor Granholm".
Am I correct, or is the newspaper who is trying to tell me that "Ex" is appropriate to use in either case the one who is correct?
We never refer to Bush as "Ex-President Bush". He's generally referred to as "Former President Bush", or just "President Bush" (which, if I'm not mistaken is somewhat incorrect, as he's not the sitting president, and when there is only one person who can hold that office at a time, the honorific isn't used).
Now, I realize that "ex" can be used in context for any person who used to do something or be something. But I'm talking AP style for writing articles and headlines.
I know this sounds kind of silly, but it's kind of significant to me.
Thanks for your help.