Theodore Edward "Todd" Rokita (born February 9, 1970) is the U.S. Representative for Indiana's 4th congressional district. He is a member of the Republican Party. He is formerly the two term Secretary of State of Indiana. When Rokita was elected to office in 2002 at the age of 32, he became at the time the youngest Secretary of State in the United States.
Early life, education and career
Rokita grew up in Munster, located in Lake County in Northwest Indiana. He holds a bachelor of arts degree from Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana, where he was an Eli Lilly Fellow.
He is a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity. He has a law degree from Indiana University School of Law - Indianapolis.
Rokita was a practicing attorney. In 1997 he joined the secretary of state's office as general counsel. He later became deputy secretary of state.
Indiana Secretary of State
Rokita was elected by his peers nationally to serve on the nine-member federal Executive Board of the Election Assistance Commission. The Commission is charged by law to address election reform issues on a nation-wide basis.
Rokita has testified about Indiana's voting reform efforts before the United States Congress.
Rokita was a named defendant in the Hoosier state's voter identification case went before the U.S. Supreme Court on January 9, 2008; the combined cases of Crawford v. Marion County Election Board (07-21) and Indiana Democratic Party v. Rokita (07-25) involved the Indiana voting requirement laws that require voters display state-issued photo IDs before voting. In April 2008, the US Supreme Court upheld that law. Rokita also serves as Indiana's chief securities fraud investigator. Rokita's office has closed hundreds of enforcement actions against violators of securities law, uncovered investor fraud scams, and helped secure numerous felony convictions and millions of dollars in restitution.
As Secretary of State, Rokita visited each of Indiana's ninety-two counties at least once per year. Rokita was named as one of the "40 under 40" by the Indianapolis Business Journal. Rokita was active in the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS), and after serving as the elected treasurer, he became the President for the 2007-2008 term.
In September 2009, Rokita outlined a plan to reform how Indiana's legislative districts are drawn to reduce gerrymandering. He proposed making it a felony for lawmakers to use political data or incumbents' addresses when drawing electoral maps.
Indiana's congressional districts and districts for the Indiana Senate and Indiana House of Representatives will next be redrawn after the 2010 Census. Rokita says boundaries should follow existing county and township lines, and that each of the 50 Senate districts should be divided into two House districts, claiming this will lead to more competitive legislative elections.
On February 1, 2010, three days after Congressman Steve Buyer of Indiana's 4th congressional district said that he would retire at the end of his term, Rokita posted an announcement on Facebook making clear his intentions to run for the open seat.
Buyer's announcement touched off a free-for-all among area Republicans to succeed him. Ultimately, 13 candidates entered the Republican primary, including Rokita. With a Cook Partisan Voting Index of R+14, the 4th is one of the most Republican districts in the Eastern Time Zone and tied for the second-most Republican in the state (behind the 5th District). It was taken for granted that whoever won the primary would be heavily favored to be the district's next congressman.
Rokita won the primary with 42 percent of the vote, and went on to win the general election with 68.6% of the vote.
Rokita is a member of the Director's Circle of the Indiana Council for Economic Education, the state bar association, the Knights of Columbus, and the National Rifle Association.
A commercial-rated pilot, Rokita volunteers his time by flying people in need of non-emergency medical care to hospitals and clinics throughout the Midwest for treatment and is a member of the Indiana chapter of the International Flying Farmers. Rokita has also served as Chair of NASS's New Millennium Young Voters Summit of 2004, chair of the standing Voter Participation Committee and vice chair of the Securities Regulation Committee.
November 8th, 2011