Political Notebook

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Stutzman to run for House whip

Media are reporting that Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-3rd, has decided he will run for House majority whip if the current whip, Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, becomes majority leader in the wake of Tuesday's primary election loss by Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia.

Stutzman might be facing Rep. Peter Roskam of Illinois, Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana and perhaps others in a caucus vote to succeed McCarthy. Scalise is chairman of the Republican Study Committee, a post that Stutzman has said he might seek.

When asked Wednesday whether he might run for whip, who is responsible for gauging how party members will vote on legislation, Stutzman told The Journal Gazette: "I don't think so. I'm not going to say no to anything."

But Stutzman told the news organization Howey Politics Indiana on Thursday morning: "I'm running. I just made that decision."

Stutzman also told Howey Politics Indiana that he is "a long shot" to win the job.

“I’m just getting started,” Stutzman told Howey Politics Indiana. “I was up really late last night making calls. There will be a lot happening in the next few days.”

Stutzman, a LaGrange County farmer and former state lawmaker who was first elected in 2010, had been a member of McCarthy's whip team until last summer, when he was booted off after opposing party procedures on advancing the farm bill.

The Journal Gazette is trying to reach Stutzman and his staff for comment.

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