Gov declines to back investigation into political ally as IG report languishes ahead of election
INDIANAPOLIS – Last Thursday, first-term Governor Eric Holcomb declined to support an impartial investigation into allegations of intimidation against Speaker Brian Bosma. It’s an eyebrow-raising decision considering Holcomb’s eagerness to back an investigation into Attorney General Curtis Hill. It comes as a Holcomb appointee has yet to deliver a report concerning Hill’s actions, a move even the most bright-eyed Statehouse observers would acknowledge looks political. If you like dance moves, Holcomb had them going.
From The Statehouse File Commentary: Brian Bosma’s Hansel-and-Gretel act
“At a press conference the day after the Star story broke, Holcomb fielded question after question about Bosma. The governor fielded them with all the grace of a rhinoceros trying to dance “Swan Lake.”
“Holcomb said he didn’t see the need for an investigation. He suggested there was a difference between Hill’s situation and Bosma’s but couldn’t articulate what that difference was.
“The governor looked like a man who desperately wanted to find the exit.”
The governor offered no way forward, no consensus. At a moment that required leadership, Holcomb demurred. It’s a puzzling decision that forces a reevaluation of the underlying motivation of Holcomb’s decision to back an investigation of Hill, but refusal to do so when considering Bosma. Shortly thereafter, more than 60 House Republicans sided with their boss – and the man that controls their political destiny – in a letter fired off by an Indianapolis communications firm.
If it all looks and feels like a Statehouse culture of cronyism and selective transparency, you’re not alone. Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody blasted Holcomb and Republicans.
“Governor Holcomb’s act is an arrogant display of the kind of political cronyism Hoosier taxpayers are sick and tired of,” said Zody. “Investigate political advisories but let allies slide? This is why some women have feared speaking truth to power and it’s the kind of two-faced political theater taxpayers of both political parties despise. Shame on Governor Holcomb for backing down when doing the right thing may have cost some political capital.”