Thursday, January 16, 2014

Ballard, Dems Still Undecided on 2015

Mayor Greg Ballard
2014 has barely had time to shake off the shrink wrap, but politicos know that 2015 is already pushing itself into position and getting ready to go.

The race for Mayor of Indianapolis continues to be the 2015 headliner while the districts for the City-County Council play out in court.

The Indy Star’s Jon Murray reports on Twitter that Mayor Greg Ballard is still considering a possible attempt at a third term and that he’s a “long way” from making a decision. Most political insiders I’ve talked to believe that too much is at stake for the Republicans to run anyone but Ballard in 2015. He remains their best opportunity to hold on to the office in a city that continues to get more and more blue.  Murray says Ballard has over $700,000 in his campaign account after raising $618,000 in 2013.

On the Democratic side, there are several candidates that are possibilities, but all roads lead to Joe Hogsett, first. The U.S. Attorney continues to build quite a resume as being tough on crime. That will certainly be an issue for the
U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett
next Mayor’s race. Hogsett is still the only field clearer.

Another interesting possible candidate is Ed Delaney, State Rep. from District 86. Delaney appeared on the Johnnystir Show on IndianaTalks.com on Monday, and I asked him about his future plans. He remained non-committal beyond 2014 and his run for reelection in 86 saying he enjoys being in the legislature and running for office. He did say that he was “capable” of running for Mayor, and that he would be seeking the counsel of not only his constituents but others as he considers what the future might hold. He made it clear that he’s not running for anything but House District 86 right now.

Sheriff John Layton, City-County Councillor Vop Osili, and City-County Council President Maggie Lewis also remain possibilities as well as blast-from-the-past, Brian Williams, who ran briefly but mostly credibly in 2011. Democrats like Sam Carson, the son of Julia Carson, and Washington Township Trustee Frank Short (who tells the Indy Star's Matt Tully that he'll run if Hogsett doesn't) remain potential candidates.

Whether Ballard runs or not in 2015, the race is sure to be another referendum on his leadership. From cricket fields to police staffing and crime rates to snow removal to the increase of property taxes, Ballard Administration decisions on these issues and many others will be at the forefront.

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