Candidates, Controversy At Ind. GOP Convention
By Mike Perleberg
(Fort Wayne, Ind.) – Candidates for statewide offices were selected by nearly 1,700 delegates at the Indiana Republican Party annual convention in Fort Wayne Saturday.
Current Secretary of State Connie Lawson was selected as the GOP candidate for the same office. Lawson, a former state senator, had been appointed to the position in March 2012 by then-Governor Mitch Daniels after Secretary of State Charlie White was removed from office following a criminal conviction.
Delegates chose Kelly Mitchell as the Republican Party’s choice for a Treasurer of State candidate. Mitchell, who currently worked in the Treasurer’s office, will look to replace her boss: fellow GOP member and term-limited Richard Mourdock.
Incumbent Auditor Suzanne Crouch was also nominated by delegates to run for re-election.
“The 2014 Republican statewide ticket is made up of qualified and hard-working Hoosiers who are ready to lead our team to victory in November,” said Indiana Republican Party Chairman Tim Berry. “Our state convention energized our Party now, more than ever before. We have three women with outstanding credentials who have been nominated to be at the top of our ticket to continue Indiana’s success story.”
The state GOP convention was not without controversy. Delegates largely voted to support a platform supporting the definition of marriage as between one man and one woman. Some in-party opponents of that platform stance said it could hurt the party’s ability to attract new voters and supporters.
Also, Mourdock made headlines after making a statement comparing Nazi Germany to the current state of the U.S.
“The people of Germany in a free election selected the Nazi Party because they made great promises that appealed to them because they were desperate and destitute. And why is that? Because Germany was bankrupt,” Mourdock said during a convention speech Saturday.
“Now I know some of you, especially some of the guests in the room, are thinking, there’s a wild-eyed Republican speaking craziness,” he continued. “We are in a grave situation. And my last duty to you as a Republican at this convention is to ask you to influence everyone you know in this state and without.”
Some party members denounced the comments, while others stuck by Mourdock.