A look at Saturdays Republican Caucus

Voters elected Chris Switzer and Mike Morris in November to fill the empty commissioner seats left by Brad and Judy Anderson. Switzer and Morris were both on the county council. So, that left their council seats open.

Posted: Jan 22, 2021 6:15 PM

VIGO COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI) -- Voters elected Chris Switzer and Mike Morris in November to fill the empty commissioner seats left by Brad and Judy Anderson. Switzer and Morris were both on the county council. So, that left their council seats open.

That means a caucus has to happen to fill those two seats and that's where things get a little murky. News 10 has been asking questions for several days about the process and who is involved. But we've received little response from the county's republican leader.

Friday, we finally received some information about who is on the ballot to fill those two county council positions. and what Saturday's republican caucus could look like.

We sat down with Lucus Bendzsa and Brad Anderson, both are running to fill the seats on the county council.

Bendzsa is looking to fill Switzers' former seat in district 2. Anderson looking to fill Morris's seat in district 3.

So here's what we learned, anyone who wanted to run to fill these seats had to fill out specific paperwork from the state secretary's website and give that paperwork to the republican party chairmen, Randy Gentry.

Paperwork had to be filled out and submitted 72 hours before the caucus if you are wanting to run.

According to the Indiana secretary of state, there is no requirement to notify the public about any of this. That includes who is running and that the caucus is even happening.

Precinct committeemen ultimately choose who is going to be filling those seats.

Bendzsa said the entire thing is kept pretty private and just between those running, those on the committee, and the Republican chair.

He said he is glad the names of people running weren't given to local media outlets ahead of time. That way the precinct committeemen couldn't be influenced by the community opinions.

"These are elected precinct committeemen, appointed precinct committeemen. These are party people who ultimately do what's best for the people in the county," he said. "The people do get a vote. They vote for their precinct committeemen. The people do get a say, they need to pay more attention to who their precinct committeeman is."

Meanwhile, Anderson previously held the county council seat for 5 terms. He said he has been involved in the community for so long and so many big things are happening for the county that he wanted to see some of it through

"Vigo County has a $300 million construction going on and COVID has kind of hurt that, but we've had a big investment and I've been involved with the community so long. I thought well I would like to see some of these things through to help anybody else that would need some help," he said.

The Republican caucus is set for Saturday at 9:30 The swearing of whoever wins the county council sit will follow later in the afternoon.

News 10 continues to reach out to republican chair Randy Gentry. So far, we have been declined each time.

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