A Goshen man running this year for north-central Indiana’s seat in Congress has switched parties.
Andrew Straw, a lawyer who declared his candidacy for the 2nd District seat as a Democrat in May, announced Tuesday he will run as a member of the Green Party instead.
Democratic leaders have been supporting Brendan Mullen to succeed U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly, a Granger Democrat who is leaving the 2nd District position to run for the Senate seat held by Republican Richard Lugar. Mullen, a U.S. Military Academy graduate and Iraq War veteran, grew up in South Bend and recently moved back to his hometown from the Washington area.
Straw has challenged the local Democratic establishment.
In May, he tried to unseat former St. Joseph County Democratic Chairman Butch Morgan from the party’s 2nd District chairmanship. (Morgan resigned from both positions in October in the wake of a petition-forgery scandal.)
Straw also has criticized St. Joseph County Democrats for not having a handicap-accessible ramp at their headquarters. Party leaders last week unveiled a portable wheelchair ramp for the downtown South Bend building and said they will work toward installing a permanent ramp.
“I cannot serve my clients or voters well as a Democrat, sad as it is for me to say because I have been active as a Democrat for decades,” Straw said in a news release. “As a progressive, I will serve you best if I can be proud of my party label and not weighed down by a ton of scandals caused by others.”
South Bend Dr. Greg Andrews, LaPorte developer Mitch Feikes and former state Rep. Jackie Walorski, of Jimtown, are running for the Republican nomination in the 2nd District.
Staff writer Kevin Allen: