The Indy Star is reporting that Secretary of State Charlie White has recused himself from his duties as a member of the Indiana Recount Commission while the commission considers White’s case. Mighty white of him! (Sorry, couldn’t resist — I assume that expression is racist, but honestly have never fully understood it.)
White, as you might recall, is accused of various charges including those having to do with whether he was legally registered to vote at the time he filed to be a candidate for Secretary of State. There were apparently some hijinx having to do with his claimed residence, presumably related to his desire to remain on the Fishers Town Council which he would have had to give up if he’d been honest about his residency.
The Recount Commission, previously chaired by fellow Wabash College Republican, Todd Rokita, when he was Secretary of State, conducted a perfunctory hearing before tossing the Democratic challenge to White over the objection of the lone Democrat on that commission. In Marion County, a state court judge ruled that the allegations in the challenge stated a claim and, therefore, the Recount Commission erred in tossing it out at this stage. White, sworn in as Secretary of State and becoming chairman of the Recount Commission in the interim, has indicated that he would recuse himself. That’s the least he can do, I’d say.
I presume the state GOP will appoint a trustworthy party guy to step in for White, that the commission will hold slightly more elaborate hearings, and then vote 2-1 against the Democratic challenge which will then be appealed back to the state court. So, at this point, the process is still mostly for show. But, at least it will be slightly less transparent without White presiding over his own case.