Stories about Indiana

Frank Mrvan wins Democratic nomination in Indiana’s 1st District to succeed Pete Visclosky

Frank Mrvan (D) defeated 14 other candidates to win the Democratic nomination to succeed outgoing Rep. Pete Visclosky (D) in Indiana’s 1st Congressional District. As of 10:50 p.m. Central Time, Mrvan had received 33.6% of the vote to Thomas McDermott Jr.’s 29.3%. No other candidate had received more than 10% of the vote. This was the first open primary for the seat since 1932; Visclosky first won election by defeating Katie Hall (D) in the 1984 Democratic primary. Mrvan will face Mark Leyva (R) in the November general election. Election forecasters rate the seat Safe Democratic.

Victoria Spartz wins Republican nomination in Indiana’s 5th Congressional District

First-term state Sen. Victoria Spartz (R) defeated 14 other candidates to win the Republican nomination to succeed outgoing Rep. Susan Brooks (R) in Indiana’s 5th Congressional District. As of 7:20 p.m. Central Time, Spartz had received 39.0% of the vote to Beth Henderson’s (R) 19.2% and Micah Beckwith’s (R) 11.6%. No other candidate had received more than 10% of the vote.
Over 90% of the satellite spending in the race took the form of mailers and advertisements from the Club for Growth in opposition to Henderson and Carl Brizzi (R).
Spartz will face the winner of the Democratic primary in the general election, which two forecasters rate “Leans Republican” and a third rates “Likely Republican”.

One Indiana Supreme Court justice faces a retention election in November

One Indiana Supreme Court justice, Christopher M. Goff, will face a retention election on November 3, 2020. He was appointed in 2017 by Governor Eric Holcomb (R).

Currently, every justice on the court was appointed by a Republican governor.

The governor appoints the five justices of the supreme court through a hybrid nominating commission where neither the governor nor the Indiana State Bar Association has majority control over the judicial nominating commission. The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications is made up of seven members: three lawyers (selected by bar members from that district), three non-lawyer members (appointed by the governor), and the chief justice of the supreme court who serves as chair.

When a vacancy occurs, the commission compiles a list of three names. The governor must then make his appointment from this list. Initially, justices serve for at least two years, after which they stand for retention during a regularly scheduled general election. If they are retained, justices serve terms that last ten years.

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Indiana advances start date for third phase of reopening to May 22

On May 21, Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) announced that 89 of Indiana’s 92 counties would advance to the third phase of reopening effective May 22, two days earlier than the original target date of May 24.

The following businesses will be allowed to reopen or expand their operations: retail stores (at 75 percent capacity); mall common areas (at 50 percent capacity); gyms and fitness centers; playgrounds and other outdoor recreation facilities; community pools; campgrounds; and movie theaters (at 50 percent capacity).

Social gatherings of up to 100 people will be permitted. Cass, Lake, and Marion counties will be eligible to move into the third phase on June 1.

Holcomb unveiled Indiana’s five-stage reopening plan, the “Back on Track Indiana” plan, on May 1. The first stage constituted the period covered by the stay-at-home order. The first part of the second stage took effect on May 4 in most parts of the state. At that time, the following businesses were allowed to reopen: retail and commercial businesses (at 50 percent capacity); manufacturers, industrial operations, and other infrastructure; public libraries; and office settings. On May 11, restaurant dining rooms (at 50 percent capacity) and personal service businesses (by appointment only) were allowed to reopen.

The target start date for the fourth phase of Indiana’s reopening remains June 14.