How To Swap Out Congressional Candidates, After Baird Opens Door

May 9, 2018

State Rep. Jim Baird (R-Greencastle) scored a surprise victory Tuesday in the Republican primary for Indiana’s 4th Congressional seat – the seat opened by Rep. Todd Rokita’s (R-Brownsburg) Senate run.

But in the wake of that victory, Baird told the Lafayette Journal-Courier if Rokita wanted to go back to running for that congressional seat, he’d be willing to talk. His campaign is now walking those comments back. But the procedure for such a move is fairly simple, with some very recent examples.

Secretary of State spokesperson Valerie Warycha says to swap out congressional candidates, the person who won the primary must withdraw their name by July 16 at noon.

“If that candidate was to withdraw, the state party chairman would then need to hold a caucus with the precinct committeemen and they would vote to find a replacement candidate,” Warycha says.

There are three examples from 2016 – Democrats replaced Senate candidate Baron Hill with former Senator and Governor Evan Bayh.

And when Rokita and Rep. Susan Brooks’s (R-Carmel) bids to replace Mike Pence as the GOP gubernatorial candidate failed, precinct caucuses put both of them back on their congressional ballots.