Todd Rokita

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After a 10-year-old rape victim received a lawful [35] abortion in Indiana, Rokita told Fox News in July 2022 that Catlin Bernard, the gynecologist who performed the abortion, was an "abortion activist acting as a doctor with a history of failing to report" abortions, indicating that Rokita would investigate whether the gynecologist had fulfilled the reporting requirement in this case, and threatening a suspension of her medical license or criminal prosecution if that was not done. [36] [37] Indiana government records released through a public records request by Fox 59 showed that the gynecologist had filed the report within the required three-day timeframe. Rokita's office responded that they would continue investigating the gynecologist. [38] [39]

A lawyer for the gynecologist sent a cease-and-desist letter to Rokita stating "Your false and defamatory statements to Fox News on July 13, 2022, cast [the gynecologist] in a false light and allege misconduct in her profession" and "mislead consumers and patients". [38] In November 2022, the gynecologist sued Rokita in Indiana Commercial Court, alleging that he improperly launched investigations into her based on meritless consumer complaints that were filed by individuals who had not actually interacted with the gynecologist, but made the complaints based on reading about the case of the 10-year old receiving an abortion. [40] [41]

On November 30, 2022, Rokita sent a complaint about the gynecologist to the Indiana Medical Licensing Board, asking for sanctions on the gynecologist. [42] [43] The complaint alleged that the gynecologist broke privacy laws and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act when discussing the case with the media, even though the gynecologist did not reveal the girl's identity. [42] [44] The complaint also alleged that the gynecologist did not immediately report the abuse to Indiana authorities. [42] [43] The gynecologist testified in court that she had informed her hospital's social work department about the abuse even before the 10-year-old travelled to Indianapolis, and also testified that the hospital's social work department handles the submission of abuse reports to authorities. [44] [45]

In December 2022, Marion County Judge Heather Welch found that Rokita "clearly violated Indiana law", specifically "the licensing statute's confidentiality provision by discussing the statutorily confidential investigation [against the gynecologist] in statements to the media" in July 2022 and September 2022 before making a complaint to the Medical Licensing Board in November 2022. [46] [47] [48] The judge elaborated that Rokita's "comments do constitute irreparable harm" in relation to the gynecologist's "concerns about reputational and professional harm". [49] However, the judge rejected the gynecologist's request to stop Rokita from obtaining the medical records of the gynecologist's patients, leading to the gynecologist withdrawing her lawsuit. [47] [48]

In September 2023, Rokita sued Bernard's employer, hospital system IU Health, claiming that it had failed to protect the 10-year old's privacy. [50] Also that month, the Disciplinary Commission of the Indiana Supreme Court filed professional misconduct charges against Rokita. [51] Two charges pertained to his July 2022 comment to the media that Bernard was an "abortion activist acting as a doctor, with a history of failing to report"; the commission alleged that Rokita's comment had "no substantial purpose other than to embarrass, delay, or burden", and that Rokita's comment was an "extrajudicial statement" that Rokita "should reasonably know" would spread publicly and would have a "substantial likelihood of materially prejudicing an adjudicative proceeding in the matter." [51] [52] The third charge alleged that Rokita violated his "duty of confidentiality" due to public statements made before referring Bernard to the medical board. [52] Rokita responded that the situation was one "that 'cancels' non-compliant citizens through intimidation as well as tactics that can weaponize our respected institutions", and also argued that the duty of confidentiality may only apply to his employees and not him, the attorney general. [51]

COVID-19 pandemic

In May 2021 during the COVID-19 pandemic, Rokita issued an opinion stating that Indiana University's implementation of a mandate to show proof of immunization violated state law. [53] [54] He also cited that Purdue University found a procedural loophole by not requiring vaccination status, but to participate in testing. [55] [56] In November 2021, Rokita filed a law suit against the Biden administration opposing a federal mandate. [57] [58] In April 2022, Rokita issued a statement saying that Indiana schools could not be sued for COVID-related damages. [59] [60] In November 2022, Rokita asked the Indiana Supreme Court to decide if students can file class-action lawsuits against Indiana’s public universities to recover tuition and fees paid for services not rendered due to cancellation of in-person classes during the pandemic. [61]

Social media

In December 2022, Rokita filed a lawsuit against TikTok, claiming that the platform exposes minors to age-inappropriate content and puts users' data at risk. [62]

Political positions

Rokita discusses education policy with U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. Todd Rokita discusses education policy with Education Secretary Betsy Devos.jpg
Rokita discusses education policy with U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos.


Rokita opposes abortion and has maintained a 100% anti-abortion voting record according to the National Right to Life Committee. [63] He stated he believes that life begins from the moment of conception "without exception". [64]

Affordable Care Act

In 2013, Rokita stated the Affordable Care Act was "one of the most insidious laws ever created by man". [65]


Rokita opposes direct federal government regulation of agriculture. As a former representative of a heavy-farming district in Indiana, he supported deregulating agriculture. [66]


Rokita has a "D" rating from NORML for his voting history on cannabis-related causes. He opposes recreational use of marijuana, citing concern that it is a "gateway drug" to more dangerous narcotics. He expressed willingness to support legalization of some medical uses for marijuana only if the THC is removed. [67]

Rokita is a supporter of industrial hemp, having voted to allow its production. In December 2018, he told a group of local Republicans that legalizing industrial hemp "could help the farming community". [68] [67]


In 2017, Rokita voted in favor of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. [69]


Rokita supports charter schools, school choice, and reducing the role of the Department of Education in setting education policy. [70] In 2015, Rokita and Senator Marco Rubio introduced the Education Opportunities Act, a bill to expand choice options through the use of tax credits. [71]

As Chairman of the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education, he had an active role in crafting the Every Student Succeeds Act, which reauthorized the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act. [72] [73] In May, Rokita introduced bipartisan legislation with Alcee Hastings (D-FL) to help students and parents with student loan debt. His legislation would allow student loan borrowers to refinance loans and have access to lower market rate loans. [74]


Rokita does not accept the scientific consensus that human activity is the driving factor of climate change, [75] [76] and at a 2013 town-hall event called the idea that climate change was caused by human activity "arrogant". [76] [77] Rokita has a 4% lifetime voting rating from the League of Conservation Voters, an environmentalist group. [78]


Rokita has stated: "I'm proud of my "A" rating from the NRA" and has said that he will "protect our 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms." [79] [80]

Health care

Rokita opposes the Affordable Care Act and voted dozens of times to repeal it during his time in Congress. [81] [82] While running for Indiana Attorney General in 2020, Rokita pledged to support a lawsuit to have the Affordable Care Act deemed unconstitutional. [83]

In December 2021, Rokita appeared on station WSBT and appeared to suggest he did not trust statistics indicating that COVID-19 had killed Hoosiers, stating, "I don't believe any numbers anymore." [84] Days later, in a series of tweets explaining the WSBT interview response, Rokita, without evidence, cited healthcare workers with financial motivations as the source of the allegedly misleading statistics and for recording deaths from other causes as COVID-19 fatalities. In the same series of tweets, Rokita thanked healthcare workers, stating they were heroes. [85]


In 2017, Rokita introduced the Stopping Lawless Actions of Politicians (SLAP) Act. The legislation would introduce fines and jail time for state and local politicians who implemented sanctuary city policies. [86] The SLAP Act did not receive a vote and thus was not enacted into law. [86]

Rokita supported President Trump's 2017 executive order temporarily banning citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S. [87]

Tribal lands

Rokita authored the Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act. The bill would "make clear that the National Labor Relations Board has no jurisdiction over businesses owned and operated by an Indian tribe and located on tribal land." It cleared the House as of 2018, but has not been considered in the Senate. [88]

Donald Trump

During his time in Congress, Rokita voted in line with President Donald Trump 90.3% of the time. [89] During the Republican primary for the 2018 United States Senate election in Indiana, Rokita earned the support of the chair and vice chair of 2016 Trump campaign in Indiana. [90]

In May 2019, the Trump White House announced Trump would nominate Rokita to join the AMTRAK Board of Directors. [91] The Senate did not act on the nomination, which expired on January 3, 2021, at the end of the 116th Congress. [92]

Efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election

In 2020, after former Vice President Joe Biden won the 2020 presidential election and Trump refused to concede while making false claims of fraud, Rokita, as Attorney General-elect, endorsed a petition to the United States Supreme Court submitted by the Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton who sought to challenge the 2020 presidential election results. [93] [94] The Supreme Court rejected the petition. [94]

After the 2021 storming of the United States Capitol in January 2021, Rokita declined to sign a National Association of Attorneys General letter condemning the attack. Instead, he issued his own statement with other Republican Attorneys General writing, "we can uphold the critical Constitutional right to freedom of speech as we oppose any attempt to hijack a protest to condemn violence." [95] [96] [97] Two days later, Rokita tweeted that "I will always be for our President." The next day he issued a statement saying that the tweets were an "experiment in free speech"; criticizing social media companies for "controlling the entire dialogue of a nation"; and said that "I also condemn the Capitol violence in the same way and terms that I have condemned the violence last summer." [98] In February 2021, Rokita falsely implied on Twitter that the 2020 presidential election had been "stolen" from Trump. [94] [99] The platform initially restricted the distribution of Rokita's message, citing the risk of violence, [94] but later found that the tweets in question did not violate policy. [100]

Electoral history

Todd Rokita
Todd Rokita, Official Portrait, 112th Congress.jpg
44th Attorney General of Indiana
Assumed office
January 11, 2021

On June 15, 2002, Rokita won the Republican nomination for Indiana Secretary of State at the state convention over Mike Delph, then an aide to U.S. Representative Dan Burton, Marion County Coroner John McGodd, and then-Vanderburgh County Commissioner Richard Mourdock. [101] Rokita went on to win the general election with 53.4% of the vote. [102]


Rokita received the Republican nomination again in 2006 and won the general election with 51.1% of the vote in a year when Democrats took five of Indiana's nine congressional seats. [103]


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.[ citation needed ]

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 representative. Rokita won the primary with 42% of the vote and the general election with 68.6% of the vote.[ citation needed ]


Rokita won the general election in 2012 with 62% of the vote. [104]


Rokita won the Republican nomination in 2014 with 71% of the vote. [105] He won the general election with 67% of the vote over John Dale, a teacher at Western Boone High School. [106]

Rokita with President Donald Trump. Rokita with President Trump.jpg
Rokita with President Donald Trump.

Rokita won the Republican nomination in 2016 with 60% of the vote. In the general election, he faced John Dale in a rematch from 2014. Rokita was reelected with 65% of the vote to Dale's 30%. Libertarian Steven M. Mayoras received 5%. [107]


On August 8, 2017, Rokita announced his intention to vacate his house seat, and run for the U.S. Senate in 2018 against Democratic incumbent Joe Donnelly. [108] He lost the Republican primary election to Mike Braun, coming in second with 30% of the vote. [109] [110]


On July 10, 2020, Rokita defeated incumbent Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill during the Indiana Republican Party Convention. [111] [112] [113] [114] Rokita went on to win the November general election, [115] securing 58.34% of the vote.

DatePositionStatusOpponentResultVote shareTop-opponent vote share
2002 Secretary of State of Indiana Open-seat John Fernandez (D)Elected53.41% [116] 42.46%
2006 Secretary of State of Indiana Incumbent Joe Pearson (D)Re-elected51.06% [116] 45.60%
2010 U.S. Representative Open-seat David Sanders (D)Elected68.57% [116] 26.28%
2012 U.S. Representative Incumbent Tara Nelson (D)Re-elected61.96% [116] 34.16%
2014 U.S. Representative Incumbent John Dale (D)Re-elected66.87% [116] 33.13%
2016 U.S. Representative Incumbent John Dale (D)Re-elected64.60% [116] 30.47%
2020 Attorney General of Indiana Open-seat Jonathan Weinzapfel (D)Elected58.34% [116] 41.66%

Personal life and affiliations

Rokita with his wife Kathy. Todd Rokita with his wife Kathy Rokita.jpg
Rokita with his wife Kathy.

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. He 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. [117] He is a member of the Indiana chapter of the International Flying Farmers, [118] and member of the Saint Vincent Hospital Foundation Board of Directors. [119]

Rokita's oldest son, Teddy, suffers from Angelman syndrome. [120] [121] Rokita is a commercial-rated pilot. [122] [123] [124]

Rokita formerly lived in Clermont, an "included town" in Indianapolis under the Unigov system. [125] The 2010 round of redistricting cut out the 4th's share of Indianapolis and Marion County, leaving Rokita's home 500 yards outside the new 4th's eastern border. Members of Congress are required to live only in the state they represent, but it is a strong convention that they live within their district's borders. In 2012 Rokita ran for reelection from his home in Clermont, [126] but he later bought a home near Brownsburg, a western suburb of Indianapolis within the 4th district. [117]

Rokita is Catholic. [127]

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Party political offices
Preceded by Republican nominee for Secretary of State of Indiana
2002, 2006
Succeeded by
Preceded by Republican nominee for Attorney General of Indiana
Most recent
Political offices
Preceded by Secretary of State of Indiana
Succeeded by
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Indiana's 4th congressional district

Succeeded by
Legal offices
Preceded by Attorney General of Indiana
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded byas Former US Representative Order of precedence of the United States
as Former US Representative
Succeeded byas Former US Representative