Congress and Indianians are still in shock over the fatal head-on collision Wednesday that claimed the life of Walorski and three others, including two congressional aides and the driver of the second vehicle.
Micah Clark, executive director of the American Family Association of Indiana, says Rep. Walorski’s absence will be felt because she combined a fighting spirit with an engaging personality, and she had a good understanding of important issues.
“She built up a strong base of support in her district,” he says of the congresswoman, who was 58. “And I think that district should stay strong if they get a good candidate, someone who shared her values, to replace her."
Walorski had represented the 2nd District since 2013. She served on the House Ways and Means Committee and was the ranking GOP member of the House Ethics Committee. Prior to her election to Congress, she served in the Indiana legislature and had served as a Baptist missionary in Romania.
An obituary about her time in Congress, published in Time, described a lawmaker who had the ear of Minority Leader Andrew McCarthy because she listened to the Republican Party’s conservative Christian base. Walorski and her beliefs were also “begrudgingly” respected by Democrats, the story said, because she fought for causes she cared about but never sought publicity or primetime booking on cable news.
Following her death, Indiana’s governor must call a special election to fill the remainder of Walorski’s unexpired term, Fox News reported. That process is complicated by the death of a Walorski aide, Zachary Potts, who is a GOP party chair and would have named a successor.