Rep. Turner Makes Resignation Official
November 26, 2014 — TheStatehouseFile.com
INDIANPOLIS – State Rep. Eric Turner, R-Cicero, has officially resigned his seat in the Indiana House, which leaves local Republicans to choose his successor.
Turner – who has faced criticism for lobbying privately for legislation that benefited him and his family – had announced before the election he would resign. But it was too late for him to remove his name from the ballot and he won reelection easily over a Democratic challenger.
House Speaker Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, has said lawmakers will consider whether to change the law that makes it difficult for parties to replace candidates on the ballot in the months leading up to an election.
Turner, first elected in 1994, said in a resignation letter to Bosma that he leaves the legislature “with my integrity and my head held high, knowing for every one of the years I served, I always tried to do what was right.”
Turner’s resignation is effective Sunday. A caucus of Republican precinct committee officials in his district will choose his replacement.
During his 20 years in the legislature, the social and fiscal conservative rose into leadership, serving most recently as speaker pro tem. However, Bosma had said even before Turner announced his resignation that he would not reappoint him to the leadership post.
Critics have accused Turner of failing to disclose a financial interest legislation he tried to influence during the last legislative session. Turner has denied any wrongdoing and the House Ethics Committee earlier this year cleared him of breaking chamber rules. But the committee said his actions did not achieve “the highest spirit of transparency” when he lobbied his colleagues to lift a nursing home construction moratorium that would have helped him and his family financially.
Turner is leaving the General Assembly to serve as a trainer with EQUIP, a non-profit organization specializing in mentoring Christian leaders. Turner is a long-time financial supporter of EQUIP and earlier he and his wife spent a week with the Christian organization in Cyprus teaching leadership to 60 Christian pastors and leaders from 12 Middle East Muslim countries.
In his letter, the Republican said that he will not be compensated for his work with EQUIP and he will pay his own expenses. Turner and his wife plan to remain in Cicero, although he said he’ll be traveling to Atlanta next month for training.