Four years ago, Mike Pence picked a Democrat, Sue Ellspermann, to be his running mate. The two never really thought much of the other and Pence had to find a way to "ditch the bitch" so he had his politically-appointed trustees at Ivy Tech tell its president, Tom Snyder, that he had to resign so he would have a job to allow Ellspermann to go quietly from the State House without throwing stones at him on the way out.
The Mitch Daniels' cronies, meanwhile, were waging war on Pence because he was only letting them make 98% of the decisions regarding Indiana state government rather than the 100% they demanded. They threatened to run one of Mitch's bitches against him in the primary before settling on the appointment of Eric Holcomb to take Ellspermann's old job, primarily as a way to block Marlin Stutzman from getting the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate by Holcomb dropping out of the Senate race. If Pence is found unresponsive, lying on his back in a hotel room closet like former Gov. Frank O'Bannon in the coming months, well, these things just happen. Holcomb, by the way, was one of those guys trashing Pence behind his back to the media for his handling of RFRA and other issues. Why does Pence think the media likes Holcomb so much?
It goes without saying the State House media couldn't be happier. The Indianapolis Star declared Holcomb, who was defeated in the only election where he previously faced voters, "a seasoned political operative with a lot of cache among Republicans--someone who could help the governor bridge a gap between social conservatives and business-oriented Republicans." The Star should have added that he has the sinister, dark circles under his eyes as proof of the skulduggery he's capable of accomplishing behind the scenes. There will be no questions about quid pro quos and other illegalities. By narrowing the Senate Republican primary to just two men, the establishment is confident they can vanquish U.S.Rep. Marlin Stutzman with their choice, U.S. Rep. Todd Young. This is all approved by the powers that be, and everyone is supposed to just shut their mouths and accept this bastardization of representative government.
Ellspermann's statement delicately addressed the fact she's giving up her elected office before the Ivy Tech board of trustees have even completed their nationwide search for Snyder's replacement and had a chance to formally act on the appointment:
The Governor and I fully respect the careful process that the Ivy Tech Trustees are following to make this critically important decision. In the same way, I respect the needs of governing through transition, the responsibility of the Legislature, and the election process. For those reasons, I have decided that now is the appropriate time to plan my transition out of the office of Lieutenant Governor.
I am pleased that Governor Pence has selected Eric Holcomb as his recommendation to succeed me as Lieutenant Governor. Eric has had a distinguished career in public service with two of Indiana’s outstanding leaders. He understands State government from his work as Governor Daniel’s deputy chief of staff and the Federal government as Senator Coats’ state chief of staff. Further, his service in the Navy demonstrates his commitment to our nation. I look forward to working with Eric as we implement a seamless transition over the coming weeks.Perhaps this is a more honest explanation of her departure now:
What does this mean? https://t.co/YxrIpjS7Lc— Mary Beth Schneider (@marybschneider) February 9, 2016
Here's Pence's statement explaining why he naming as his light governor a man who has been a part of the incessant backstabbing of him by the Daniels wing of the party for the past year:If Ivy Tech wasn't open would you want to stay on? Sue: I think Ivy Tech is a better seat on the bus for me.— Adam VanOsdol (@AdamVanOsdol) February 9, 2016
“I’m pleased to announce my intention to name Eric Holcomb as my nominee for lieutenant governor for the state of Indiana,” said Governor Pence. “I have known Eric for nearly 20 years, and his integrity, character, and experience make him uniquely qualified for this new role. He is a man of character and distinction and I am confident he will serve Hoosiers well as we continue our work to make Indiana a great place to live, work, and raise a family.
“I would like to thank Lt. Governor Ellspermann for her service and unmatched enthusiasm for our state. Sue has served Hoosiers and our administration with integrity and distinction. Throughout her tenure she steered numerous economic development initiatives including convening a Rural Broadband Working Group to pursue increasing internet connectivity throughout our state and leading an agricultural trade mission to Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. She also served as Vice Chair of the Indiana Career Council.”
“Janet and I could not be more excited and grateful to Governor Pence for this opportunity that will allow me to champion the kinds of policies that continue to strengthen our great state, ” said Eric Holcomb. “As we build upon our state’s economic momentum and confront the complex challenges before us, I look forward to working alongside Governor Pence as Indiana’s lieutenant governor to craft Indiana solutions to improve the lives of Hoosiers and move our state forward.”
“It has been a special honor for me to serve alongside a great Governor and share in all that we have accomplished to benefit the people of Indiana,” said Lieutenant Governor Sue Ellspermann. “As I look forward to other opportunities for service, I am pleased that Eric Holcomb will become the next Lt. Governor. Eric has a distinguished record of service to his nation and his State. He understands State government from his work as Governor Daniels’ Deputy Chief of Staff and is ready to be a valuable partner with Governor Pence leading our State to even greater months and years ahead.”A happy Todd Young:
My full statement after @GovPenceIN made an announcement over Indiana's next Lt. Gov: pic.twitter.com/C3lySCO1wV— Rep. Todd Young (@RepToddYoung) February 9, 2016
An accurate picture of what just transpired:
Former Angie's List CEO Bill Oesterle and fellow Daniels' alum turns on his old pal for selling out:Corp. media gleefully reports @GovPenceIN initiation into "bond of obedience" to #MyMasterMitch for picking Holcomb pic.twitter.com/kRR6vwjQtt— Charlie White (@indysentinel) February 9, 2016
My friend Eric Holcomb has let ambition distract him from his principles. Sad day for me.— Bill Oesterle (@billo317) February 9, 2016
Eric said Pence, "Set the right tone" on lgbt issues. To me, he has been blisteringly critical of Pence's handling.— Bill Oesterle (@billo317) February 9, 2016
Expediency is not a sound strategy.— Bill Oesterle (@billo317) February 10, 2016