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Monday, May 2, 2016

Baird, Miller, Bray win easily in local legislative races

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Taking in the election results at the Putnam County Courthouse were State Senator Pete Miller(left) and Putnam County Prosecuter Tim Bookwalter.
Republicans won easily in the three Indiana General Assembly positions up for grabs on the Putnam County ballot Tuesday.

District 44 State Rep. Jim Baird of Greencastle easily won a second term, defeating Democrat challenger Richard Thompson of Parke County, 15,732-8,445 district-wide, earning 65 percent of the vote in the process.

The Republican Baird, who two years ago ousted State Rep. Nancy Michael, the former longest-serving Greencastle mayor, captured 29 of the 31 Putnam County precincts in outpolling Thompson 8,817-4,888.

That equates to 65.3 percent of the vote locally for Baird, identical to how he fared district-wide.

Rep. Baird claimed all but the Second West and Third West precincts within the City of Greencastle.

In Clay County, Baird captured 57.3 percent of the vote in topping Thompson by a 1,385-1,033 count.

Meanwhile, Putnam County will be essentially served by two new state senators.

Republican Pete Miller, who has been the District 24 state senator since April when he succeeded Connie Lawson after she became Indiana secretary of state, captured 68 percent of the vote on Tuesday.

Miller easily outpolled Democrat and fellow Avon resident Charles Bender by 39,039-18,076 in the district.

In Putnam County, Miller earned 67 percent of the vote with a 5,061-2,497 margin over Bender.

Visiting the Putnam County Courthouse Tuesday on his first election-night stop, Miller said he is "looking forward to organization day" at the Statehouse.

"I can't wait to see what committees I'm on," the former member of Gov. Mitch Daniels' Office of Management and Budget said.

"The budget would be my preference," he noted, "but typically that's not going to go to a freshman (senator). Education is another area I have a passion for."

Miller, who represents most of Putnam and Hendricks counties, would also like to be involved in tax policy and local government financing issues.

However, Miller knows solving local government financing issues won't be easy.

"Indianapolis will complain about what Washington does to us, and then turn around and do the same thing to local government," Miller pointed out.

In Senate District 37, Republican newcomer Rodric D. Bray, son of longtime State Sen. Richard Bray (R-Martinsville), claimed 71 percent of the vote in defeating fellow Morgan County resident Jim Cahill by a 36,779-14,871 count.

In Putnam County, Bray received 63.5 percent of the vote, outdistancing Cahill, his Democrat challenger, 3,581-2,055.

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