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The Journal Gazette

Sunday, December 17, 2017 1:00 am

Videos make Holcomb a social media star

BRIAN FRANCISCO and NIKI KELLY | The Journal Gazette

Gov. Eric Holcomb was the star of two priceless videos on social media last weekend.

The first was of him paying off a bet he made with Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin about the Army-Navy college football game.

Holcomb – a Navy guy – had to do 14 pushups, which he videotaped alongside his Christmas tree and with a cameo from first dog Henry. Holcomb's form was a little sloppy at the end, but props to the governor for his sense of humor after Navy's heartbreaking 14-13 loss.

A few hours later, Holcomb posted a video of him doing carpool karaoke with Pastor Rob Fuquay of St. Luke's United Methodist Church in Indianapolis.

Holcomb and Fuquay – wearing a Santa hat – croon first to Nat King Cole and then kick it up with Bruce Springsteen's version of “Santa Claus is Comin' to Town.”

“You better be good for goodness' sake,” Holcomb sings in a deep bass, taking the part of Springsteen's late saxophonist, Clarence Clemons.

Holcomb asks the man of the cloth whether all dogs really go to heaven, to which Fuquay can only say his dog probably won't be going to heaven.

“I've never had a more fulfilling job,” Holcomb says of being governor and helping people.

The pastor prods Holcomb to join his mother for services at St. Luke's.

“I'm just the messenger,” Fuquay says. “You've got to come and join Mom sometime.”

The duo finish up with a little “Jingle Bell Rock.”

Teacher seeks state Senate seat

Fort Wayne Democrat Kathy Zoucha has declared her bid for the Indiana Senate District 15 seat, which has been represented since 2014 by Sen. Liz Brown, R-Fort Wayne.

“We're struggling. We're hurting,” Zoucha told a group last week at her announcement. “Hoosiers deserve better, and I will work to return value to working Hoosiers.”

She said Hoosiers make less money than residents of other states, pointing out that residents of Des Moines, Iowa, earn 23 percent more than Fort Wayne residents do.

Zoucha is a special education teacher with a bachelor's degree in science and humanities from IPFW. She ran for a House district seat in 2016 but lost to Republican Rep. Dave Heine, R-New Haven. 

Senate page program open

The Indiana Senate is accepting applications for the Senate page program.

This full-day interactive program gives students in grades six through 12 the opportunity to tour the Statehouse, observe session debates on the Senate floor and assist staff with age-appropriate tasks. Students also meet with their state senators.

“Meeting lawmakers and watching debates are unique aspects of the page program that many students enjoy,” Senate President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne, said. “I encourage students to take advantage of this opportunity to learn about the legislative process firsthand.”

The 2018 Senate page program will run from mid-January through early March. Positions fill quickly, so it is important to sign up early. Pages are scheduled for Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays during the legislative session starting at 8:30 a.m. and dismissing at 3:30 p.m. Groups serve together on Wednesdays. Serving as a page is considered an excused absence from school.

New appointment

Gov. Eric Holcomb tapped a former state representative from northeast Indiana in recent appointments to state boards and commissions.

Rebecca Kubacki of Syracuse will join the Distressed Unit Appeals Board. The panel hears petitions from distressed political subdivisions and school corporations in need of relief.

Kubacki, a Republican, served in the Indiana House from 2010 to 2014.

To reach Political Notebook, email Brian Francisco at or Niki Kelly at An expanded Political Notebook can be found as a daily blog at