Problem was that the two individuals from law enforcement that he picked to join him were Jack Sandlin and Aaron Freeman, two City-County Councillors, also running for Senate. Sandlin is a former law enforcement officer, and Freeman is a former deputy prosecutor.
Sandlin promoted the event on his campaign website, according to the Indianapolis Star, and neither he nor Freeman could be reached for comment.
Merritt acknowledged that he should have done things differently to the Star saying that they would have held the news conference outside the chamber in hindsight and took full responsibility for the event. Democratic Senate Leader Tim Lanane sent a letter to Senate President Pro Tempore David Long to complain about the campaign event being held in the Senate chambers.
It's certainly an issue because both Sandlin and Freeman are battling Sean Gorman and Sara Wiley in tough contests for the Senate District 36 and 32 seats. Both are open seats with retiring incumbents.