In an unexpected development, challenger D.J. Johnson withdrew his election challenge in the House 13 election on Friday morning, leaving Jim Glenn as the undisputed representative for that district.
The House election challenge board had ordered a recount by the Daviess County clerk. That recount took place this past Saturday, and ended in a tie.
At a meeting of the election challenge board today (Friday), the lawyer for Johnson asked the board to decide the election by flipping a coin. In response, the lawyer for Glenn, Anna Whites, noted that he was already sworn in, and the only way to remove a sitting representative is through impeachment. “You cannot impeach Rep. Glenn with the flip of a coin,” she said. She then indicated that if Glenn lost his seat through a coin toss, she would file suit.
Johnson then addressed the board, stating that he felt he owed it to the voters in the district to challenge the results. He noted that in his opinion, the challenge board had two options: calling a special election, which he didn’t think was a good idea but was sure he would win; or, the coin flip.
He said that his main goal in running had always been to serve the best interests of the people in the district, and that he ran because he believed his policies and ideas were better than those of Glenn.
But then, he said that if there were a coin toss and a resulting lawsuit, it would create a “legal circus” in his hometown. “I will not put my community through that,” he said.
“What’s best for my district, what’s best for my people in my community is that I end this.” He then withdrew his challenge.
With the challenge withdrawn, there was no longer a need for an election challenge board, so the board disbanded.