Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Ninth District Race: It's Tennessee Trey vs. Zoeller & Company

Greg Zoeller
Trey Hollingsworth
Trey Hollingsworth is a Republican, and he's rich.

How rich?  Well, if he were to be elected to Congress, he'd be one of the richest members. He also has loaned his campaign over $600,000, and we've seen a constant stream of pro-Hollingsworth ads paid for by his campaign or outside PACs.

Hollingsworth's certainly saying all the right things to appeal to his right wing base.  He wants to repeal Obamacare among other typical Republican talking points.  He's got all that down.

It seems to be just part of the plan to introduce the 32-year-old entrepreneur to Hoosiers.  After all, he just moved to Indiana from Tennessee last year seemingly to run for the 9th District Congressional seat being vacated by Todd Young.

Is it opportunism at its best or a miscalculation?

It seems that Hollingsworth sees his main competition for the seat as Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller.  The southern Indiana Republican has never met a lost cause he can't defend in losing case after case to the federal government in court.  Term limited, Zoeller, the cousin of pro golfer Fuzzy Zoeller, cannot run again for Secretary of State.  Instead of running for another term as AG, Zoeller's leaning on his experience as a Senate and White House staffer and running in the 9th District for Congress.

Shelli Yoder
There are others in the race.  State Senators Erin Houchin and Brent Waltz are running along with engineer Robert Hall.

Hard to handicap this one.  If GOP voters buy Hollingsworth's line that Zoeller is a member of the establishment and is a career politician, then Zoeller might be in trouble.  If Hollingsworth is seen as a carpetbagger who moved to Indiana to get elected, then he might be in trouble.  I think this one has the chance to be incredibly close.  It's also a big of a wildcard race with the vote splitting a potential of five ways.

On the Democrat side, past candidate and Monroe County Councillor Shelli Yoder seems solid in her bid against token opposition.  Yoder ran for the office in 2012.  She gave it a credible run then, and Democrats will likely give her another chance.

The other Dems include James McClure, Jr., Bill Thomas, and the ever-present Bob Kern, who adds the 9th District now to the offices he's pursued going back to the 90's.


Anonymous said...

Zoeller is AG, not Sec of State, and AG is not a term limited position.

johnnystir said...

Good catch.

Anonymous said...

Does Zoeller even live in the 9th District? Does he need to?

johnnystir said...

No. He doesn't have to, but I believe I heard somewhere has a house in the 9th.