Huston (R) was the only candidate in a closed-door Republican caucus to replace the retiring Brian Bosma. Bosma will preside over most of the 2020 session but step aside as speaker a few days before adjournment. That’s when final decisions are being made on the biggest bills, but Bosma says those calls have typically been made by the full leadership team — he says the transition won’t be that different.
Huston will spend most of the session learning the behind-the-scenes aspects of the job, then be sworn in as speaker a few days before adjournment. He says he’s excited at the opportunity to play a key role as Indiana adjusts to changes in the economy and the state’s population.
Huston says bringing health costs under control will be a top priority — Bosma and Senate President Pro Tem Rod Bray (R-Martinsville) have said that will be a key focus of the upcoming session. But Huston says the state also needs to plan for rising energy costs. He says both are critical pieces of the economic climate Indiana presents to prospective businesses. And he says he’ll use his two-month apprenticeship to get up to speed on a full range of issues beyond those he’s focused on in the past.
Huston says he’ll seek to continue what he says has been Bosma’s record of encouraging bipartisan cooperation and civil disagreement.
Huston is in his fourth term in the House, after serving as chief of staff to former state school superintendent Tony Bennett. He co-chaired the Ways and Means Committee this year, taking the lead in writing a new state budget and the sports betting law, while Chairman Tim Brown (R-Crawfordsville) completed his recovery from a 2018 motorcycle crash. Bosma says Brown will resume full control of the committee this session, though Huston will remain a member of the panel.
Bosma is the longest-serving speaker in Indiana history. He announced his retirement two weeks ago. He plans to resign from the House sometime after the May primary.
Fishers deputy mayor Leah McGrath announced her candidacy for Bosma’s House seat on Monday, the first candidate to do so. The district covers parts of Marion, Hamilton and Hancock Counties.