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Après-Pence, Three Candidates Fall In Line To Seek GOP Nomination

Brandon Smith

The Indiana Republican Party will choose its replacement for Mike Pence on the gubernatorial ticket in a little more than a week. 

Once Mike Pence withdrew his name from the ballot so he could run on Donald Trump’s ticket, three key figures in Indiana politics wasted no time formally announcing their intention to seek the GOP nomination for governor.

Lieutenant Governor Eric Holcomb and U.S. Representatives Susan Brooks and Todd Rokita pulled their names from their own races within hours. 

Political analyst John Ketzenberger says--at least for the 22 members of the Indiana GOP’s state committee --Holcomb is probably the current favorite:

“He’s already been on the campaign trail," Ketzenberger says. "He's already got the benefit of being well-known within the Republican Party. He’s a good campaigner.”

But University of Indianapolis political scientist Laura Albright says the committee may veer away from the lieutenant governor in favor of a candidate with more statewide name recognition.

“Usually, look to the lieutenant governor, but obviously Holcomb hasn’t been in that office for very long," she reasons. "I don’t see him as necessarily fulfilling that role.”

Holcomb became lieutenant governor in March.

The GOP state committee will meet July 26th to choose the gubernatorial nominee. 

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.
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