INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -
Legislative Republicans are not going to take any action on a proposal that
aims to make it easier to remove some state officeholders from their
positions, which was filed by an Indiana legislator who says she was groped
by state Attorney General Curtis Hill.
A House committee
chairman said Tuesday that he wouldn’t call the bill for a hearing before a
deadline for action next week. Leaders of the Republican - dominated
Legislature have already said they plan no action against Hill despite calls
for his resignation from Gov. Eric Holcomb and other state officials.
Mara Candelaria Reardon of Munster filed the proposal a month ago to create
a 12-member oversight commission with the power to oust the attorney general
for sexual misconduct.
In October, a
special prosecutor declined to pursue any criminal charges against Hill,
despite a state report that witnesses said he inappropriately touched
Candelaria Reardon and three female legislative staffers in March during a
party at an Indianapolis bar to celebrate the end of the legislative
session. Hill has denied the allegations.
Kevin Mahan of Hartford City, chairman of the House government committee,
said now isn’t the time to consider the bill while Hill still faces a
possible lawsuit over the allegations.
"I think we just
need to see where all this is going to fall out under the unfortunate
circumstances that exist,” Mahan said.
Reardon’s proposal followed questions about the Legislature’s authority to
impeach and remove the attorney general from office since the position was
created under state law and not included in the Indiana Constitution. Her
proposal would give the oversight commission such authority over the state’s
attorney general and the schools superintendent, the other statewide office
not listed in the constitution.
Democratic Rep. Ed
DeLaney of Indianapolis said he’s preparing an impeachment motion for the
House to consider but might, instead, seek legislative censure of Hill.
“That might be more
palatable for the majority but this action by the attorney general needs to
be dealt with by the organization that he victimized,” DeLaney said. “He
victimized the Legislature - that’s very unusual - as well as our female
member and staff members.”
who was absent Tuesday from the Statehouse, didn’t immediately respond to a
request for comment made through the law firm representing her and the other
women in a tort claim filed against the state before a possible lawsuit.
Hill has largely
remained out of the public eye in the Statehouse since holding a news
conference shortly after the allegations became public in July, calling them
“vicious and false.” He didn’t respond to questions about whether he was
calling the women liars.
didn’t immediately reply Tuesday to a request for comment on Candelaria
Reardon’s proposal or DeLaney’s remarks.
lawmakers might need to consider the process for removing an attorney
general from office.
“I hope justice
prevails at the end of the day in whatever the situation is,” he said. “If
we need to regroup and look at that the next session then that’s something
we could look at.”