Wayne Superior Court No. 2 Judge Gregory Horn will decide by Monday whether to order the Wayne County clerk to put the names of those running unopposed in Richmond’s Nov. 8 general election back on the ballot.
Horn presided over a preliminary hearing Friday in the lawsuit filed last week by Wayne County’s two political parties, two candidates in that election and two voters in districts where candidates are unopposed.
They filed an injunction asking for a prompt ruling opposing an interpretation of a new Indiana law that requires county clerks statewide not to list names of unopposed candidates on ballots in municipal elections. The Indiana Legislature this year created the law in the hope of helping counties save on election costs.
Wayne County Clerk Jo Ann Stewart was named in the lawsuit along with Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White and the Indiana Election Commission. Indiana deputy attorney general Betsy Isenberg defended White and the election commission Friday while county attorney Ron Cross defended Stewart.
Horn listened to arguments, noted the urgency for a ruling in the case and said he would work all weekend on a decision. Stewart previously testified that ballots had to be finalized to the printer by Sept. 24.