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Indiana Secretary of State Convictions Could Kick Off a Bumpy Month for Daniels

By JoshMogerman in News on Feb 4, 2012 9:00PM

Photo of Gov. Mitch Daniels from the Indiana Governor's homepage.
Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels took a bit of a star turn last week with the Republican response to the President’s State of the Union response. For many in the GOP, the speech was a breath of fresh air compared to the current crop of presidential candidates. But while Daniels' star is rising nationally once again, closer to home everything is not well for his administration.

This morning, Secretary of State Charlie White was convicted of a half dozen felonies related to lying about his home address to receive a $1000/month stipend while serving on a town council. If the convictions hold, White will have to leave office. This follows a December ruling that could overturn White’s election to office due to the same residency issues. In that case, the judge ruled that his Democratic opponent should be declared the winner of the election, which will certainly tee up a big partisan fight for the Republican governor who would otherwise appoint a replacement.

And later this month, a soon-to-be-former Duke Energy executive will be compelled to answer questions from community and environmental groups over the controversial Edwardsport coal plant in Indiana. A growing scandal over cost overruns and lack of transparency have ensnared the Governor and many of his staffers. Closer to home, similar issues of access and transparency have dogged the Governor around his administration’s response to inquiries about the BP refinery in Whiting.

It could get bumpy in Hoosierland...