Saturday, August 13, 2011
Marion County GOP Chairman Kyle Walker Calls for Rep. Phil Hinkle's Resignation; Is Walker's Request About the Good of the Party or About Eliminatng an Independent-Minded Elected Official He Can't Control?
Whether to resign is obviously something that is a personal decision and Hinkle needs to discuss with his family. I for one, and perhaps its driven by selfish motives, do not believe resignation is a fait accompli. If Hinkle were to admit to his mistakes and say he's going to work to do better by his family and constituents, I think this story could fade into history as he finishes out his term. Regardless, it is imperative that a politician dealing with such a scandal not make a rash decision that he might regret if given more time to consider it.
Thus far, Chairman Walker is the only Republican official to ask Hinkle to resign. Unfortunately the media took at face value Walker's claim that he was issuing the call for the best interest of the Marion County GOP, not considering that maybe it had something to do with Walker's personal dislike of Hinkle and his salivating at replacing him.
Hinkle is one of the few politicians who has the backbone to stand up to GOP Chairmen like Tom John and Kyle Walker. Hinkle is independent-minded and couldn't be controlled like so many other Marion County GOP elected officials. Because of this, Hinkle has been a thorn in the side of Walker and he would love to get rid of the legislator. I bet the minute the new broke, Walker picked up the list of precinct committeemen in Hinkle's district and started filling the vacancies with "mummy dummies" who will go to any vacancy convention to vote for his choice.
Interestingly one source of possible canddiates - the Indianapolis City-County Council - might be off limits. Three westside Republican councilors may live in Hinkle's district, Janice McHenry, Robert Lutz, and Marilyn Pfisterer. They are the type of candidates Walker likes - they do exactly what their told to do by leadership, even when their votes are bad for their constituents and highly unpopular. All three supported the $33.5 million taxpayer gift to the Indiana Pacers and the 50 year parking meter deal, a giveaway of nearly a billion dollars to ACS, a politically connected company.
The hitch is that McHenry, Lutz and Pfisterer are all candidates for re-election this Fall. If one of them were to get picked to fill any vacancy created by a Hinkle resignation, I don't think their positions can be filled on the November ballot and the district would probably end up going to the Democrats. While McHenry's district will almost certainly go to the Democrats this fall anyway, Lutz and Pfisterer's still lean signficantly Republican and they will probably win re-election.
Walker showed what type of person he is by the statement he issued. Rather than show compassion and take an approach like Governor Daniels or Speaker Bosma, Walker's immediate reaction was to ask for Hinkle's resignation. He didn't even wait to talk to Hinkle or learn all the facts. Don't for a second think this is because Walker cares about the Marion County Republican Party. He cares about himself and his insider friends. Walker would jump at the opportunity to get rid one of the few Indianapolis Republican elected officials who has the temerity to stand up to him.
There is one resignation though I am looking forward to - Walker's. During his tenure the man has done absolutely nothing to rebuild the grassroots of the Marion County GOP, instead continuing the Tom John-style model of dictatorial leadership that treats GOP grass roots workers with utter disdain and mere tools to be used by the leadership. When the Republicans lose the Mayor's race and lose control of the Council this November, Walker needs to accept responsibility and resign. Now there is a resignation which would truly be for the good of the party.