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Indiana congresswoman dies in car crash

Rep. Jackie Walorski, R-Ind. Associated Press/Photo by J. Scott Applewhite

Indiana congresswoman dies in car crash

U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski, 58, a Republican who represented Indiana’s 2nd Congressional District, and two members of her staff, district director Zachery Potts, 27, and communications director Emma Thomson, 28, died in a head-on collision in Indiana around noon Wednesday. Edith Schmucker, 56, also died. Police initiallt reported that Schmucker had drifted over the center line and collided with Walorski’s vehicle. However, on Thursday they changed their story, saying it was the SUV in which Walorski was a passenger that crossed the center line. 

What did Walorski do in Congress? U.S. Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind., said in a statement that the congresswoman was a Christian and pro-life advocate. Previously, she served in Indiana’s House of Representatives, was a reporter in the state, and did missions work with her husband in Romania, providing food and medical care to children.  Walorski was first elected to Congress in 2012 and would have run for her sixth term this fall. In 2015,  she withdrew her sponsorship of a Republican bill that would have protected babies after 20 weeks. Though Walorski was still willing to vote for the bill, she took exception to a clause in the bill requiring that incidents of rape or incest had to be reported to the police. In 2022, she served on the House Ways and Means Committee. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy made Walorski the head Republican on the House Ethics Committee, and she would have become chairwoman of the committee if Republicans won the House majority in November. “Everyone who knew Jackie knows she was tough but fair—a no-nonsense, straight shooter who knew that Congress must reflect the will of the people with decency and honesty," McCarthy said.

Dig deeper:  From WORLD’s archives, read J.C. Derrick’s report on the bill from which Walorski withdrew her sponsorship. 

Mary Muncy

Mary Muncy is a breaking news reporter for WORLD. She graduated from World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College.


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