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Bill Puts Unopposed Municipal Candidates Back On The Ballot

The bill would put unopposed candidates on municipal ballots unless the county's election board voted unanimously to keep them off.

sample ballot

Photo: K. Latham (Flickr)

It is up to the Indiana Election Commission to decide whether a candidate should be on the ballot in May's primary election.

Unopposed municipal candidates will go back on the ballot under a bill headed to the governor’s desk.

The General Assembly passed a bill last year taking municipal candidates without opponents off the ballot. Supporters of the effort say they wanted to save money. But several communities cried foul and filed lawsuits over the matter.

This session, the legislature revisited the issue and bill author Kathy Richardson says she thinks it struck a fair balance. Richardson says there are still communities that support keeping unopposed candidates off the ballot, and the bill provides them an option.

“In communities who choose to not publish the unopposed candidates, just the opposed candidates, they would have to have a unanimous vote of their county election board,” he says.

The bill passed the House unanimously.

Brandon Smith, IPBS

Brandon Smith, IPBS has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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