Friday, October 31, 2014

Expanding Focus to Federal, Statewide, Local Races

This week, I've been looking at the various ballot races across Marion County.  Let's expand our focus out into the statewide races and the races for U.S. House across Indiana.

Let's get this out of the way first, I expect no changes in the U.S. House delegation from Indiana.  Democrats Andre Carson and Pete Visclosky along with Republicans Jackie Walorski, Marlin Stutzman, Todd Rokita, Susan Brooks, Luke Messer, Larry Bucshon, and Todd Young should all return to Congress.  Only Walorski's race will be close.  I'm cheering for Joe Bock, but I just don't get the feeling that this is the year for Walorski to come home.

Nationwide, I think Republicans will gain control of the U.S. Senate.  That's bad news for Democrats in the short term, but it should be great news for 2016.

At the statewide level, the Democrats have run fine campaigns.  Beth White, Mike Claytor, and Mike Boland have all done what they've needed to do.  The problem is that Indiana is a red state.  While we are known to assert our independence every once in a while, we typically elect Republicans in midterm elections to these offices.  That means that likely Connie Lawson, Suzanne Crouch, and Kelly Mitchell will be elected.  
It's hard for me to write that because I believe the three Democrats have the experience and the ideas to be great for Indiana.  I've known Beth White for years, and I consider her a good friend.  She's been devoted for eight years to her job as Marion County Clerk, and she would bring the same zest and zeal to the office of Secretary of State.  

I've become quite friendly with Mike Claytor as well.  His pledge to become the state's watchdog is not just a pledge.  He would be a great friend to taxpayers in Indiana.

Mike Boland, in the times we've met, seems to have the government experience, albeit in Illinois, to be a great Treasurer of State.  He, like Claytor and White, has the energy and ideas to do a great job.

Back in Marion County, a couple of races will be worthy of watching.  JD Ford vs. Mike Delph continues to draw attention.  I think it will be close in Senate District 29.  While few expect House District 91's race to be tight, I have seen a groundswell of support on social media for Democrat Patrick Lockhart as he takes on incumbent Republican Bob Behning.  I wouldn't be surprised if it's closer than people expect.

While this is not your normal midterm, it could still be a fun night to watch election returns!


Eric said...

Indiana is NOT a red state. We're purple. We had sixteen years straight of Democratic governors (Bayh, O'Bannon & Kernan) and went for Obama in 2008. Had Obama targeted Indiana in 2012, instead of writing us off early due to some dumb statistical model, he might have won Indiana in 2012. It is statements like "Indiana is a red state" which discourages Democrats from voting ("we're gonna lose anyways, so why bother voting?"), depresses Democratic turnout in off-year elections and helps the Republicans win. So, keep right on helping Republicans in the Indy Democrat Blog!

johnnystir said...

I've never once been discouraged from voting because I live in a red state. In fact, it's emboldened me. I love the fact that I live in a blue county in a red state.

It does make a difference that we are largely red in these down ballot state races just like it makes a difference in Marion County that we're largely Democratic here. It takes a special candidate to break through. Governor Bayh was that candidate. Governor O'Bannon followed. Kernan did an excellent job, but his campaign never flourished.

If you're going to sit at home because of something I write here, then I'm not the problem.