Indiana Republicans recently picked Lt. Gov. Eric Holcomb to replace vice presidential candidate Mike Pence on the ballot in the governor’s race against Democrat John Gregg.
The 22-member Republican State Central Committee voted anonymously to select Holcomb over 5th District Rep. Susan W. Brooks and 4th District Rep. Todd Rokita, who had both withdrawn from their House races.
While Holcomb seeks to build off Pence conservative policies, Gregg aims to shake up Indiana politics by focusing on poorer communities that had been struggling to recover from the Great Recession.
Holcomb had been endorsed by Pence and Republican Sen. Dan Coats, whom he previously served as chief of staff.
Holcomb had earlier run to replace his former boss in the Senate before dropping out of the race in February. The following month, after Lt. Gov. Sue Ellsperman resigned, Holcomb was appointed to take her place.
That gave Democrats a talking point.
“Eric Holcomb has sought three different public office positions in just one year, and each campaign has carried the same out-of-touch, ideological agenda that has set both middle-class Hoosiers and Indiana’s economy back,” Indiana Democratic
Party Chairman John Zody said in a statement after Holcomb’s selection.
Rokita and Brooks both took themselves off the November ballot so they could run for governor. They must now go through a caucus of precinct chairmen in their districts to get back on the ballot
A spokeswoman for Brooks said Tuesday that the congresswoman intends to do just that. Rokita has not yet commented on the outcome.
Gregg, the Democratic nominee for governor, is the former speaker of the Indiana House. Gregg is pushing his economic plan.
Gregg toured a north side computer software company Wednesday to talk about the need for more high tech jobs.
Gregg said Indiana can do more to help cover training expenses in the technology sector.
After the tour he spelled out differences between himself and GOP candidate Eric Holcomb. He said he wants to serve as governor while Holcomb wants simply to be governor.
“I’ve only been a candidate for one statewide office and I think my opponent been a candidate for three statewide offices in the last four months,” he said. “The job of governor is a very important job. It’s not a consolation prize.”
Gregg is also attracting national TV coverage because his race is now targeted by the Democratic Governors Association.