The Official Website of Josh Gillespie

Skillman Making the Right Moves For 2012

Two recent articles in the Anderson Herald Tribune and the Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette have caught my eye.  Both of them cite Becky Skillman as, not only a logical successor to Mitch Daniels, but also poised to succeed him.  Now, the Lieutenant Governor hasn’t made an official announcement that she will be running for Indiana’s top spot in 2012, but her actions, heavy speaking schedule during Spring’s Lincoln Day, fundraising, and the hard to miss email updates from the “Skillman for Indiana” committee lead one to believe that she might looking to eventually drop “lieutenant” from her title.

(The other name people drop for the job of Indiana governor is Congressman Mike Pence, but I’ve already addressed that possibility.)

Becky’s qualifications shouldn’t be overlooked.  There is probably no one who has a better feel and understanding than Skillman.  Becky originally got her state in county government as serving, first, as Lawrence County Recorder then County Clerk.  She was then elected a State Senator in 1992 eventually becoming Majority Caucus Chair, the first woman in history to serve in the Senate Republican leadership, then chosen to be Mitch Daniels running mate in 2004.  With Mitch’s victory, Becky become the first female elected Lieutenant Governor in Indiana history.

Her role as LG isn’t a frivolous position either.  According to the Herald Tribune “When USA Today published a 2005 story on the emerging powers of lieutenant governors, Skillman was cited as an example of a second-in-command with influence.”  In fact, as LG Becky presides over the state Senate and oversees agriculture, energy and economic development in addition to chairing the Office of Community and Rural Affairs, the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, Office of Energy and Defense Development, and the Office of Tourism Development.

More importantly, according to Governor Daniels:

“Becky’s been our legislative manager on all the biggest bills of the last six years,” Daniels said. “She’s been my closest counselor. No governor ever had a better partner than I do.”

That’s high praise coming from the person who could very well be a Republican contender for President in 2012.

I don’t have anything personal against Mike Pence should he run for governor.  What I think we all know is that Mike Pence wants to be President and to get there, he more than likely needs the executive experience of being governor.

What do we know about Becky?  She has a clear understanding of what is currently going on in Indiana.  She knows how to run state agencies, she knows how to develop a state budget and she has the desire to be Governor.  If there was any question to this, she practically shut the door to that when speaking to the Journal-Gazette.

Given her 12 years in the state Senate before being elected lieutenant governor, GOP state senators might defer and not challenge her in the 2012 primary, if she’s in. And she all but told the newspaper’s reporter that she is.

“2010 is a huge year for so many others, from the courthouse to Congress,” the story quoted Skillman as saying.. “Maybe we need to wait till after the November election” to announce her plans.

Does she aspire to anything higher?  If so, we don’t know.  What we do know is that, like Mitch Daniels, Indiana is solely in her sites and nothing else.

To be fair, I’m not done with this subject yet.  2012 is still a ways away.  The Skillman/Pence discussion will only get better.  The one thing we know for sure about these two possible candidates, is that they both want the best for Hoosiers.  They both have a desire to our needs before their own.  And that is something that I want in the next Governor of Indiana.

Tags: , ,

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.