In light of a lengthy list of election woes for Porter County’s midterm election, including a preliminary tally of results that wasn’t complete until Friday, the Porter County Board of Commissioners and two members of the County Council are asking for the immediate resignation of Clerk Karen Martin. Commissioners made their request after election board officials announced the results were online during a sometimes heated news conference. “Under normal circumstances, the board of commissioners would have never suggested anything like that. I think Karen’s conduct after Tuesday night is what convinced us that something had to be done,” said Commissioner Jim Biggs, R-North. “Being MIA at a time when her leadership was at its highest need – short of someone taking my legs from me, I would have been there. I would have had to be there. It was unfortunate but it needed to be said.”
Martin said via text message that she will be finishing her term. She declined additional comment, including on commissioners’ request for the FBI to investigate the election for allegations of election law violations. Biggs and county attorney Scott McClure met with the FBI for two hours Thursday afternoon; it is not immediately known if the federal agency will undertake an investigation.
Once the results were known, Martin, a Republican, lost in a bid for county auditor to incumbent Vicki Urbanik, a Democrat, according to preliminary vote totals. Martin, in her second term, could not seek a third term as county clerk under state statute.