Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Who Would Take Lubbers' Senate Seat?

Word has leaked out that State Sen. Teresa Lubbers (R-Indianapolis) is the leading candidate to take Stan Jones place as Commissioner of Higher Education. If she accepts the job, she will resign her position in the Indiana Senate. Republican precinct committeepersons would caucus to pick her replacement. Any speculation on who will be interested in her seat? I'll throw out a few names. Steve Keltner, an emergency room assistant by occupation, ran for this senate seat as a Libertarian. Steve has subsequently switched his allegiance to the Republican Party. Ken Morgan ran a respectable primary race against Lubbers last year. Adam Nelson, an unsuccessful state representative candidate against Ed DeLaney last year, may have an interest in the seat. Also, Glenn Hatmaker, a former Senate staffer and precinct committeeperson, has expressed an interest in the seat in the past.

UPDATE: Add to this list these political insiders who don't have to look to grassroots support for help at a caucus of mostly-appointed committeepersons: City-County Councilor Ryan Vaughn, Rep. Cindy Noe, former Goldsmith hack Anne Shane and former BMV Commissioner Ron Stiver.

Here's another thought. Shouldn't there be outrage at Lubbers for resigning her senate seat less than six months after she won re-election? This has become a standard practice of legislators to resign their seat in the middle of their terms rather than not seeking re-election at the end of their terms. The consequence of this action is to deprive voters of the right to pick their legislator. Lubbers' replacement will get to serve for 3 1/2 years before he or she will face voters. I'm getting so sick and tired of this practice. It is time we changed the law to require special elections. Maybe we would have a lot less resignations if the resigning legislator knew it would be hard for party leaders to handpick their replacement.

8 comments:

Wilson46201 said...

Considering that Lubbers will be replaced by a special caucus of hardcore-Republican precinct committeepersons of the District, it's highly unlikely they'd select somebody who changes political parties willy-nilly. Keltner is obviously a non-starter.

Paul K. Ogden said...

I can say this, after what he did to me at the Department of Insurance (and since) in order to protect a Kernan appointee involved in wrongdoing, if the name Jim Atterholt is even uttered as a possible replacement for Lubbers, I'm going to be working overtime calling precinct committeemen. Jim and I were friends and political allies, but there is no excuse for what he did all in the name of protecting a Democrat supervisor in his office.

Wilson46201 said...

On Jim Shella's Blog, a much more interesting name is being floated: Councillor Ryan Vaughn (employee of Bob Grand)! Vaughn confirmed he's interested...

Advance Indiana said...

Paul, I was appalled to learn that Republicans in Marion County appointed Atterholt to the waterworks board. It is highly inappropriate for a state agency head to take a seat on a local board of this nature. He's serving in an executive branch capacity at both the state and local level. The Dems have apparently added Frank Short, a lobbyist to the waterworks board. When Short was a City-County Councilor, he had to abstain from voting on the purchase of the water company because he was a paid influence peddler for the water company. If anyone thinks he's on that board to look out for the public's interest, they had better think again. The make up of that current board is a complete joke. Lacy Johnnson hack, Sam Odle, chairs it.

Advance Indiana said...

Why not Ryan Vaughn? He could trade two dozen conflicts of interest he has on the City-County Council for three dozen he would have representing the senate district.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Not sure when the Waterworks appointment of Atterholt happened, Gary. I would definitely opposed that if I knew about it..

I agree that it's totally inappropriate for the head of a department of state government to be on a local board like that. Of course the rumor is that Atterholt is not long for IDOI anyway. If Atterholt's new job is being held up waiting for my lawsuit to be dimissed, they may be waiting a long time.

HOOSIERS FOR FAIR TAX said...

Keltner may be Republican now, but I can assure you that he acts like a Libertarian.

Wilson46201 said...

If Keltner throws his hat into the GOP Senatorial ring, I can assure you Melyssa's "endorsement" (above) will be noted in the fray... :-)