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Indiana State GOP looking for new leadership after convention

  U.S. Sen. Mike Braun  United States Senate
U.S. Sen. Mike Braun

The Indiana Republican Party will select a new chair after its current leader announced she would step down over the weekend.

In a statement released Sunday by the state party, Chairwoman Anne Hathaway said she told members of the Indiana GOP state committee last Friday that she would leave that role upon the selection of a successor. That vote will take place June 24.

Besides the departure of Hathaway, who won re-election as the state’s national committeewoman, the announcement revealed Joe Elsener would also resign as the party’s executive director.

“As the Republican National Committeewoman, I am not leaving, I am just returning to my seat on the committee,” Hathaway said in a statement. “I look forward to continuing to represent Indiana within the RNC and to continue to support our grassroots operations across the state as we work to elect our next President, Governor and Republicans up and down the ticket.”

That news came just a day after state delegates broke with U.S. Sen. Mike Braun, the party’s nominee for the gubernatorial race in November, by selecting Micah Beckwith as the party’s pick for lieutenant governor. The pastor from Noblesville, who co-hosts a podcast called “Jesus, Sex and Politics,” beat state Rep. Julie McGuire, the Indianapolis lawmaker who was Braun’s hand-picked nominee for the No. 2 spot on the ballot. McGuire even had the backing of former President Donald Trump, Politico correspondent Adam Wren reported.

Beckwith won by a vote of 891-828, and 95 delegates did not show up at the convention on Saturday in Indianapolis.

In a post on social media Monday morning, Beckwith thanked Hathaway and Elsner for serving the party.

“I look forward to working with the new State Chair and Executive Director to get Republicans elected across the state this Fall!” he added.

Hathaway became the Indiana Republican Party’s first female chair after the state committee elected her to the position Aug. 31. She replaced Kyle Hupfer, who served as the chair for more than six years.

Current Gov. Eric Holcomb nominated Hathaway last year. A former assistant to then-Vice President Dan Quayle, she also served on Holcomb’s transition team when he won the gubernatorial election in 2016.

Holcomb cannot run for a third consecutive term.

By virtue of being the party’s next gubernatorial nominee, Braun will nominate Hathaway’s successor as state chair.

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