State GOP Committee prepared to consider new candidate for Governor

FILE - Mike Pence (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE)- If Governor Mike Pence agrees to become presidential hopeful Donald Trump’s running mate the Republican party would have to find a new candidate for Indiana’s gubernatorial election.

Under state law, Governor Pence has to drop out of the race if he accepts a bid to be Trump’s running mate. If he wants Republicans to be able to replace him on the ballot, this has to be done by noon on July 14.

Then the 22 members of the GOP’s state central committee would have 30 days to find a suitable candidate. The committee consists of a chair and vice chair from each of the state’s 9 congressional districts.

Barbara Krisher is the Chair of the 3rd Congressional district and Bill Davis is the Vice Chair. They are two of the people on the committee tasked with making the big decision.

Over the last week, Krisher and Davis said people who are anxious to take Governor Pence’s spot on the ballot are already expressing interest.

“There’s already been several,” said Davis. “I have to believe there’s probably going to be more, butthat won’t happen until the vacancy has actually occurred.”

Davis said if and when Pence withdraws his name the committee may be bombarded with phone calls.

“The person on the state committee could get calls from the candidates and also [they’ll get calls] from people supporting that candidate,” she said.

Governor Pence is locked in a close battle with Democrat John Gregg, which means the Indiana State Republican committee must pick a good competitor.

Three names have surfaced as leading contenders are U.S. Representative Susan Brooks, U.S. Representative Todd Rokita and Lieutenant Governor Eric Holcomb.

“I believe it’s very important that we look at the next candidate to be someone who can be competitive in that race and make sure we continue to move the state forward with republican leadership,” said Davis.

Davis said this is an exciting opportunity for Governor Pence and Indiana politics.

“It’s unique and it’s interesting,” he said. “It’s an outstanding opportunity for our Governor to be able to help move our country forward like he had our state.”

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