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Private Republican caucus chooses newest Indiana state lawmaker, Lori Goss-Reaves

Indiana Republican party officials pose for a photograph with the newest state lawmaker, Lori Goss-Reaves. Goss-Reaves is a White woman with blonde hair.
Courtesy of the Indiana Republican Party
From left to right, Madison County GOP Chair Russ Willis, new state Rep. Lori Goss-Reaves, Fifth District Chair Judy Buck, Indiana Republican Party Chair Kyle Hupfer and Grant County Chairman Darren Reese pose for a photo after the Republican caucus that elected Goss-Reaves.

Indiana has its newest state lawmaker.

A private Republican caucus Thursday evening elected Lori Goss-Reaves to replace Ann Vermilion, who resigned late last month.

Vermilion endorsed Goss-Reaves to replace her and introduced her at the caucus election.

Goss-Reaves, a social worker and Indiana Wesleyan University professor, said she will be honored to work on the issues Vermilion championed at the Statehouse, including addiction and mental health.

“No matter the issue, I will face it with courage, strength, a firm commitment to our conservative values, high energy and a tireless work ethic,” Goss-Reaves said.

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Goss-Reaves also prominently mentioned some of the culture war issues that have gripped the Statehouse in recent years, including abortion and banning transgender youth from sports.

Goss-Reaves will serve out the remainder of Vermilion’s term, which ends next year.

One out of every five current state lawmakers originally joined the General Assembly via private political caucuses.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.