A challenge to Mikayla Granados’ eligibility to run for county council was set to be in front of the Dubois County Superior Court Thursday but she filed her paperwork to withdraw from the race.
Senator Mark Messmer, the chairman of the Dubois County Republican Party, filed a challenge to Granados’ candidacy last Monday based on her felony record. That felony is set to be reduced to a Class A misdemeanor after August 27, but under Indiana code, anyone with a felony conviction is ineligible to run for public office even if the felony is reduced to a Class A misdemeanor.
In a letter published in The Herald on July 15, Granados stated the felony charge was based on police finding a medication belonging to her fiancé for a genetic disorder he suffers from. When the prescription was found in the home during a search, Granados was charged with the possession since her name was on the lease.
She stated in the letter that she opted for a plea agreement rather than a trial to avoid the potential loss of her freedom if convicted.
A movement to dismiss the case filed this evening by Ms. Granados’ attorney, Russ Sipes, states she decided to run for one of the three county council-at-large seats under misinformation from the Secretary of State’s office.
Democratic Party Chairman Mike Kendall has stated he spoke to the state election commission and was told Granados could run for office. Further, the filing from Sipes explains that Granados and Kendall sought advice from the state election commission after learning she was in violation of the Indiana Code. However, they were advised she could remain on the ballot until the chairman of a political party in the county or a candidate running for the same office filed for her removal.
According to Sipes, this information became apparent after the July 15 deadline for a candidate to file a withdrawal from the race.
Sipes’ filing also cites the Indiana Code as unconstitutional but Thursday morning, the court will simply have to rule on dismissing Messmer’s case as well as allowing Ms. Granados to withdraw since it is past the time in which she could do so.
The Dubois County Democratic Party will have 30 days to fill the vacancy on the ballot.
In an interview last week, Messmer said Granados has avenues to expunge her record in the future and potentially run for office.
Granados, a Jasper resident, is a pre-law student at St. Mary of the Woods with a 4.0 GPA who also cares for her disabled fiancé and child.