In just under two weeks, area voters will be choosing from a handful of contested races on the ballot. Indiana Senate District 41 includes portions of Bartholomew and Johnson counties. Voters will be deciding between incumbent Republican Greg Walker and Democrat Ross Thomas. Both men live in Columbus.
Republican incumbent State Sen. Greg Walker was born and raised in Columbus. He attended Indiana University and earned a degree in finance, later working toward his masters in business administration. He and his wife Allison have four children. He has worked in taxation and finance, and as a revenue agent for the state of Indiana. He now does business consulting and concentrates on the state senate.
He has held the senate seat for 12 years and that was his first run for office.
Democrat Ross Thomas, grew up in Jennings County and holds a degree in political economy from Tulane and a law degree from Indiana University. He has a law office in Indianapolis and lives in Columbus with his wife Amy and their three children. He serves on the board of the local Little League Babe Ruth League and this is his first run for office.
We asked the candidates what the need for hate-crime legislation in Indiana.
Walker says that Indiana gets a bad rap.
Thomas says having a comprehensive hate-crimes statute just makes good economic sense.
We asked the candidates about the state’s role in assuring counties have proper funding for their roads.
Walker says that in the past few years Indiana has made strides in better funding infrastructure
Thomas says that the state capped property taxes, which also capped community’s ability to self-fund road repairs..
We also asked the candidates about their thoughts on potentially legalizing marijuana.
Walker says its difficult for the state to decriminalize weed while the federal government still deems it illegal.
Thomas says its not right to keep marijuana from those who need it.
Early voting is going on now at the Bartholomew County Courthouse voter registration office from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays. The general election is Nov. 6th.