This paper shows that elections decrease regulatory actions against misconduct in the financial industry. In the United States, regulation of financial misconduct is carried out by three types of regulators: federal, state, and self-regulatory. Most state-level financial regulators are directly appointed by state governors. We analyze a new database on regulatory actions covering 49 US states from 1990 until 2019, to assess whether state-level electoral incentives affect regulatory activity. Exploiting exogenous electoral cycles of US gubernatorial elections, we find causal evidence that state-level financial regulators reduce regulatory activity starting five months before gubernatorial election events. This slump occurs even earlier if elections are contested. Federal and self-regulatory regulators do not punish less in response to gubernatorial elections, suggesting a direct link between gubernatorial elections and state regulators. Using data on the average duration of preparation for each case, we show that there is a significant rush to finish regulatory actions up to five months prior to gubernatorial elections. We find no evidence for a catch-up effect after gubernatorial election events. These results underscore the persistence of electoral cycles in financial regulation.