Indiana caucuses pave easier paths to Statehouse for lawmakers

INDIANAPOLIS - Nearly a fifth of sitting Indiana lawmakers have taken office without ever waging a public campaign because of a party caucus system that's seeing increased use.

   Twenty-eight of the state's 150 sitting lawmakers were sent to the Statehouse by a political caucus held after a seat became vacant through resignation or death.

   Republican Sen. Sue Glick of LaGrange tells The Journal Gazette the process was designed to be used when a lawmaker dies but has gotten increased use as society becomes more mobile.

   Some critics charge the system is rigged toward those in the know about upcoming vacancies. But Republican Senate President Pro Tem David Long of Fort Wayne notes that even those who are chosen by caucus have to stand for re-election.
 

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