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Election Board will not investigate bribery allegation from Carmel mayor's race

Brainard and Glynn.JPG
Posted at 10:36 AM, May 14, 2019

CARMEL — The election board in Hamilton County will not investigate an allegation of bribery made in the mayor's race in Carmel.

The board voted 2 to 1 at Tuesday's meeting to not hear more evidence on whether the campaign of Mayor Jim Brainard offered money to Republican Primary challenger Fred Glynn to drop out of the race.

The complaint was filed by Joe Weingarten, the chair of the Hamilton County Democratic Party, after Current in Carmel initially reported about a meeting that had happened in early February. That meeting involved Laura Campbell, the chair of the Hamilton County Republican party, a representative from Brainard's campaign and Dan Hennessey, who was the campaign manager for Fred Glynn at the time.

Weingarten said Glynn had told him that he was offered money by the "Brainard Campaign" to drop out of the race. Neither Glynn, nor anyone else from his campaign attended Tuesday's meeting.

David Brooks, the attorney for the chair of the Hamilton County Republican Party said that a bribe was not offered. Instead, what was discussed was whether Brainard would “support” Glynn in a future run for office should Glynn choose to not challenge Brainard.

Brainard has claimed he had no knowledge of the meeting.

"Mr. Glen, who in my opinion was wholly irresponsible in bringing these charges to the press and embarrassing the city of Carmel," Brooks said. "He should owe the citizens of Carmel an apology for making these allegations, which were ridiculous and he had no first-hand knowledge of to start with."

"You know, you get one campaign that shows up, the campaign that won and they say, 'We won, so nothing else matters,'" Weingarten said. "That's not how it always works. Sometimes you have to dig a little deeper and I'm hoping someone out there does dig a little deeper."

The two Republican members of the election commission voted to dismiss the complaint due to a lack of a probable cause. The lone Democrat on the panel voted in favor of holding a full evidentiary hearing.

You can watch the meeting and vote below.