Area county clerks were surprised Friday when they learned Wayne County political parties and candidates had filed suit over a new Indiana law allowing candidates for non-contested offices to be left off ballots.
Republican and Democrat party officials, two city council candidates and two voters filed a lawsuit late Thursday in Wayne County court asking Wayne County Clerk Jo Ann Stewart be prohibited from dropping the names of unopposed candidates for District 2 and 4 seats on the Richmond Common Council. The suit also names the Indiana Election Commission and Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White as defendants.
The lawsuit in Wayne County questions how candidates can be elected if nobody votes for them, but that apparently already happens when Indiana towns don’t have elections.
Union County Clerk Susan Ray said no ballots will be ordered for West College Corner’s town offices. The town won’t have an election because no candidates are opposed, she said.
There won’t be an election in Glenwood either, the only incorporated town in Fayette County, because all candidates are unopposed, Fayette County Clerk Melinda Sudhoff said. Indiana towns haven’t been required for decades to have elections when all races are unopposed.
Ray said she wasn’t planning to include unopposed Liberty clerk-treasurer candidate Cheryl Begley’s name in her ballot preparation for Liberty’s town election, where six candidates filed for five at-large seats on the town council.
“I was really surprised by the lawsuit,” Ray said. “I haven’t ordered the ballots yet (for Liberty). Maybe that’s a good thing.”
Full Article: Suit surprises other clerks | Palladium-Item | pal-item.com.