Political Notebook

  • Fries gets Farm nod
    Allen County Sheriff Ken Fries has received the endorsement of the Indiana Farm Bureau ELECT in his primary election race for the District 15 Indiana State Senate seat.
  • Wyss honored by commissioners
    The Allen County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday paid tribute to retiring state Sen. Tom Wyss at its legislative recap breakfast.
  • 3 Democrats to talk taxes
    Democratic candidates for state auditor, a state Senate seat and Wayne Township trustee will have a joint appearance Monday to talk about Earned Income Tax Credit programs and helping low-income Hoosiers file their tax returns.
Casey Cox accepts congratulations last fall after being voted to replace Phyllis Pond in House District 85.

Cox wins hazing

Late Tuesday night – after emotional debates on everything from gay marriage to drug testing – Fort Wayne Republican Rep. Casey Cox rose to the podium of the Indiana House.

He was presenting his first bill for a full vote of the chamber, and Cox knew what was coming -- a rite of passage of sorts when a newbie legislator gets picked on by the veterans.

His bill was simple – requiring the Indiana State Police to conduct a study on the use of familial DNA, which is when law enforcement use DNA collected from one family member to either exonerate or hone in on another family member.

After his quick explanation, Rep. Charlie Brown, D-Gary, rose to chat with Cox at the microphone. The tall lawmaker from northwest Indiana regularly questions new lawmakers.

He started by shaking Cox's hand and House Speaker Brian Bosma quipped, "please extend the hand of friendship and buckle up."

Brown asked what the Criminal Law and Sentencing Policy Study Committee is.

Cox answered incredibly specifically, even naming the article and title of the code in which the committee was created to the cheers of fellow members.

This clearly threw Brown off, who simply said "It was very nice to meet you" and sat down.

To contact Niki Kelly email her at nkelly@jg.net or follow her on Twitter @nkellyatJG.