Greg Zoeller

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Greg Zoeller
Zoeller Greg sm.jpg
Attorney General of Indiana
Incumbent
In office
2009 - Present
Term ends
2017
Years in position 5
PartyRepublican
PredecessorSteve Carter (R)
Compensation
Base salary$89,722
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First electedNovember 4, 2008
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Campaign $$2,303,654
Term limitsNone
Education
J.D.Indiana University School of Law (1982)
Personal
BirthdayMarch 28, 1955
Place of birthNew Albany, Indiana
ProfessionCharity president, legal and political counselor
ReligionCatholic
Websites
Office website
Personal website
Campaign website
Greg Zoeller (b. March 28, 1955, in New Albany, Indiana) is the current and 42nd Republican Attorney General of Indiana. He was first elected to the statewide position in 2008, and assumed office the following January.

Zoeller ran for, and won, re-election as state attorney general in 2012.[1] After being nominated for a second term by Republican delegates at the party's primary convention in June, Zoeller went on to defeat Democratic challenger Kay Fleming, an Indianapolis attorney, in the general election on November 6, 2012.[2][3]

Before becoming attorney general, Zoeller had amassed two decades of experience in politics without ever holding elected office himself. His past credits include serving as counsel and assistant to Dan Quayle in the U.S. Senate, and later, in the White House, after Quayle ascended to the vice presidency alongside former President of the United States George H.W. Bush. Zoeller has represented the U.S. delegation to NATO in Brussels and led the World Trade Center of Indiana as both director and president of the organization.

Beginning in 2001, Zoeller worked as the chief deputy attorney general under then-officeholder Steve Carter, in addition to his role as chief of the litigation division and advisory services of the office. Within this capacity, he directed the overall administration of legal services provided by the attorney general's office.[1]

Zoeller's second term as attorney general expires in January 2017 and he will next come up for re-election, if he chooses to run, in November 2016.

Biography

Immediately upon receiving his law degree, Zoeller served as both the legislative and political counsel to then-Senator Dan Quayle. It was within this role that he managed five statewide offices in Washington, D.C. and Indiana. He was appointed as a special assistant to United States Attorney General Richard Thornburg in 1988. From 1989 to 1991, Zoeller served as an assistant to Vice President Dan Quayle within the White House. He was selected in 1992 to serve as Vice President of the Indiana Council of World Affairs on board the United States delegation to NATO in Brussels, Belgium.[1]

Zoeller then assumed the roles of president and director of the World Trade Center of Indiana, a charitable organization whose mission is to attract new industries or retain old ones within a given area.

In 1988, Zoeller received the Sagamore of the Wabash Award.

Education

  • Juris Doctorate degree, Indiana University School of Law (1982)

Political career

Indiana Attorney General (2009-Present)

Zoeller narrowly defeated Democrat Linda Pence to win election as Indiana's 42nd Attorney General in the November 4, 2008 election. He was re-elected on November 6, 2012, defeating Kay Fleming (D).

Healthcare reform

HealthCare
Health-care.jpg
See also: State Attorneys General Against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010

On the same morning President Barack Obama signed into law his controversial health care reform measure, The Affordable Patient Protection Act of 2009, Zoeller joined thirteen other state attorneys general, all but one being Republican, in filing suit against "the federal government to stop the massive health care overhaul, claiming it's unconstitutional."[4][5] The newly-elected attorney general stated that he would "join in the most appropriate legal actions available to represent the significant interests of our state in this matter."[6] Using Indiana Code 4-6-8-2, which authorizes the state's attorney general to "make any reasonable or appropriate investigation or study of any such existing or proposed federal legislation whenever he is specifically requested so to do by any of this state's senators or representatives in congress and report the result thereof as requested," United States Senator Richard Lugar asked Zoeller to "conduct a legal analysis of the constitutionality of provisions of the federal healthcare bill" on January 5, 2010.[7][8] The Indiana Attorney General had received similar inquiries from other congressmen, including Representatives Dan Burton and Mike Pence, at around the same time. About a month later, Zoeller published a fifty-five page report on his findings. Based on the language of the Senate Amendment 2786 to the House Resolution 3590 - The Patient Protection Affordable Care Act, he argued that the bill "would add roughly half a million more Hoosiers to the Medicaid rolls and create unintended consequences for patients, taxpayers and Indiana's medical-device industry." Not only would the federal legislation increase the state's Medicaid costs by $2.4 billion over ten years, but would also "divert pharmaceutical rebate savings from the states to the federal government, potentially resulting in a loss to Indiana of $750 million by 2019." Furthermore, the report states, the federal health care plan would ultimately spell the end for the Healthy Indiana Plan, which allows low-income state citizens to purchase state-run health coverage, while at the same time failing to achieve one of the legislation's major goals of reducing health care costs, as promised by Congress.[9]

Zoeller was among a small group of attorneys general to take part in the oral arguments against the constitutionality of the individual mandate component of the law before the U.S. Supreme Court in March, 2012. Three months later, the Court ruled by a 5-4 vote to uphold the law, with the proviso that the mandate penalty be preserved in the form of a tax. Although he was disappointed in the court's decision, Zoeller defended the time and effort he invested in the lawsuit. “I still maintain it was not a frivolous case. It will give us guidance on what authority the federal government has and doesn’t have,” he told a reporter after the announcement. Zoeller also urged the public, particularly those who, like him, had hoped for a different outcome, "to maintain civility and respect for the U.S. Supreme Court."[10]

Human-Trafficking

In February, 2012, Zoeller pushed successfully for legislative changes which are now in effect making it easier to prosecute traffickers and rescue victims.

Upon his election to the attorney general's office, Zoeller was tasked with developing ways to raise awareness about the human-trafficking industry and stifle its demand. As part of the nation-wide "Pillars of Hope" initiative, he founded the "Don't Buy the Lie" campaign that "aims to inform the public that purchasing sex is not a victimless crime and it fuels human trafficking." He serves as the co-chair of the Indiana Protection of Abused and Trafficked Humans (IPATH) task force. The task force has trained more than 2,000 people, ranging from law enforcement officers to hospitality workers, since the campaign launched in July, 2011.[11]

Super Bowl renter scam

In his capacity to protect Indiana consumers, attorney general Zoeller filed a suit in Marion Superior Court against two Arizona-based home-rental companies accused of defrauding Indianapolis homeowners in preparation for the 2012 Super Bowl, which Indiana hosted. The companies offered services such as photographing and listing the homes of locals interested in renting to out-of-town fans seeking a place to stay while in town for the game. Super Week Lodging LCC and Major Home Rentalz guaranteed refunds for those whose homes did not get rented out, some of whom payed in excess of $1,400 in individual "online listing fees."[12] The scam yielded almost $30,000 in total losses, according to the 21 complaints registered with the attorney general's office.[13] "Although the Super Bowl brought positive attention and business to Indianapolis, it also brought in scammers who intended to deceive and take financial advantage of consumers," Zoeller explained after filing the lawsuits on March 1, 2012.[13]

Approximately five months later, Zoeller announced that one of the companies, Super Week Lodging LCC, failed to respond to the state suit, forcing Marion County Superior Court judge to issue a default judgment. The judgment ordered the company to pay $217,725 in fines and restitution for reneging on rental agreements stemming from the 2012 Super Bowl and placed an injunction on the company to prevent future deceptive acts. Zoeller said the default judgment amounted to $40,975 in consumer restitution, $176,000 in civil penalties and $750 in costs.[12]

Poverty

Since 2009, Zoeller has orchestrated an annual program aimed at reversing the post-holiday season dry up of food donations to banks and drives to help the hungry. The March Against Hunger food drive charges all law firms in Indiana and in adjacent states' metropolitan areas to donate food and money to Indiana's 11 regional food banks. In 2011, 50 law firms in Indiana Ohio and Kentucky donated more than 6,000 pounds of food and raised $27,574. Owing in part to the recession, the poverty rate in the region was alarmingly high, with about one in six Indiana residents at risk of hunger.[14] In 2012, Attorney General of Ohio Mike DeWine joined the effort.[15]

Elections

2012

See also: Indiana attorney general election, 2012

Zoeller won re-election in 2012. In Indiana, the two major parties conduct state conventions to nominate candidates for statewide offices.[16] On June 9, Republican convention delegates officially nominated Zoeller for attorney general.[17] The Democratic nominating convention took place one week later, with Indianapolis attorney Kay Fleming emerging as the Democrat's pick to challenge Zoeller's incumbency in the November 6 general election.[3]

Attorney General of Indiana General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngGreg Zoeller Incumbent 58% 1,453,334
     Democratic Kay Fleming 42% 1,051,504
Total Votes 2,504,838
Election Results via Indiana Secretary of State.


2008

Zoeller was narrowly elected Indiana Attorney General in 2008, defeating Democrat Linda Pence. He was unopposed in the Republican primary.

Indiana Attorney General - General Election, 2008
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngGreg Zoeller 50.7% 1,318,147
     Democratic Linda Pence 49.3% 1,279,284
Total Votes 2,597,431

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Zoeller is available dating back to 2008. Based on available campaign finance records, Zoeller raised a total of $2,303,654 during that time period. This information was last updated on July 10, 2013.[18]

Greg Zoeller's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Attorney General of Indiana Won $872,814
2010 Attorney General of Indiana Not up for election $180,564
2008 Attorney General of Indiana Won $1,250,276
Grand Total Raised $2,303,654

2012

Zoeller won re-election to the position of Attorney General of Indiana in 2012. During that election cycle, Zoeller raised a total of $872,814.

2008

Ballotpedia collects information on campaign donors for each year in which a candidate or incumbent is running for election. The following table offers a breakdown of Greg Zoeller's donors each year.[19] Click [show] for more information.


Personal

Zoeller currently resides in Indiana with his wife, Kerrie Turner, and their three children - Gretchen, Katherine, and Michael. He is also a practicing member of Christ the King Catholic Church.

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Contact information

Indiana

Capitol Address:
Office of Indiana State Attorney General
Indiana Government Center South
302 W. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Phone: (317) 232-6201
Fax: (317) 232-7979
E-mail: Constituent@atg.in.gov

See also

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External links

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Indiana Attorney General, "About" accessed September 15, 2012
  2. NWITimes, "Indiana Republicans pass party torch to Pence," June 9, 2012
  3. 3.0 3.1 Indiana News Center, "Democrats meet their nominees," June 16, 2012
  4. Associated Press, "13 attorneys general sue over health care overhaul" 23 March, 2010
  5. The Indianapolis Star, "Indiana joins 13 states to challenge health reform" 30 March, 2010
  6. The Hoosier Pundit' "Zoeller Readies Legal Challenge to ObamaCare" 23 March, 2010
  7. Find Law - Ind. Code § 4-6-8-2 : Indiana Code - Section 4-6-8-2: Reports; senators or representatives in congress
  8. The Hoosier Pundit, "Greg Zoeller to Review Constitutionality of ObamaCare" 7 Jan. 2010
  9. The Hoosier Pundit, "Zoeller Issues Report on ObamaCare" 6 Feb. 2010
  10. Indiana Star, "No regrets:Indiana's attorney general stand by health care case," June 28, 2012
  11. Office Press Release, "AG Zoeller: Spotlight on Super Bowl, national efforts to fight human trafficking," February 4, 2012
  12. 12.0 12.1 Inside Indiana Business, "Super Bowl Rental Company Ordered to Pay," July 13, 2012
  13. 13.0 13.1 general?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|IndyStar.com IndyStar, "SuperBowl 2012 home rental companies sued by Zoeller," March 1, 2012
  14. Evansville Courier & Press, "Post holiday help for local food-banks," February 21, 2012
  15. FOX19.com, Attorneys General Zoeller and DeWine team up for March Against Hunger," February 27, 2012
  16. Indiana Code, IC 3-8-4-1, accessed May 1, 2012
  17. NWITimes, "Indiana Republicans pass party torch to Pence," June 9, 2012
  18. Follow the Money, "Career fundraising for Greg Zoeller," accessed July 10, 2013
  19. Follow the Money.org


Political offices
Preceded by
Steve Carter (R)
Indiana Attorney General
2009–present
Succeeded by
NA