ANGOLA — The race for the 3rd congressional district in northeast Indiana has developed a race on the Democratic side, while the incumbent has just filed for reelection.

On Thursday, Rep. Jim Banks, a Republican from Columbia City, filed for a fourth term in the House.

Banks has elevated his stature in the House, being elected to chair the Republican Study Committee, a group of conservative lawmakers. He has been a speaker at CPAC, the gathering of the Conservative Political Action Committee, which holds sway with many members of the conservative wing of the Republican Party.

But he has not been without controversy. He was nominated to serve on the Jan. 6 committee to study the insurrection last year, but was removed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Banks was one of many Republican lawmakers to vote against certifying the results of the 2020 presidential election.

The Democrats will have at least a three-way race for their 3rd District congressional candidate. Phillip Beachy and Aaron “A.J.” Calkins both filed, joining Gary Snyder who had put his name in earlier.

Those three will battle for the Democratic nomination for the seat currently held by Banks.

John Stevens, of Roanoke, had been testing the waters for a run at the Democratic nomination, speaking at party events last fall, including making an appearance in Angola. Among his credits was a stint with Organizing for American, a group founded by President Barack Obama.

Stevens, like other candidates, offered himself as an alternative to Banks.

No one has come close to beating Banks in his first three runs. The closest was in 2018 when he carried about 64% of the vote over Democratic challenger Courtney Tritch. His vote tallies in the other two elections were about 70% in 2016 and 67% in 2020.

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