Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Zody Outlines Process for Replacing Hill on Ballot

John Zody
Last night at the Decatur Township Democratic Club, John Zody, the Indiana Democratic Party Chair, had a lot to talk about.

First of all, Zody could not say anything official on Evan Bayh. The candidate selected to fill the empty spot on the November ballot vacated by Baron Hill will be voted on by the state's Democratic Central Committee.  Zody was quick to point out that Evan Bayh or another Democrat could, in theory, be selected to fill the ballot slot.

He did outline the process.  The caucus to fill the empty spot on the ballot will be July 22, and candidates will have to file by Tuesday, July 19.  That means an official statement from Bayh about his candidacy may still be up to a week away.  Democrats leave for Philadelphia on July 23.

The state Chair did praise Hill for his run.  Zody served with Baron Hill as his Chief of Staff for four years when the Southern Indiana Democrat was in Congress.  "Nothing changes as far as our philosophy goes.  Baron Hill was going to fight for the middle class in the U.S. Senate, and Evan Bayh or whoever our candidate is will fight for the middle class in the Senate."

Zody did address a possible ballot opening on the Republican ticket for Governor.  He said, "If Mike Pence is named the running mate of Donald Trump, John Gregg will still be the Democratic candidate for Governor the next day."

In the state's legislative races, Zody said he hopes to pick up a few seats in the House and Senate, "I think we can do away with the supermajority this year."  He said that chipping away at the Republican numbers and finding good candidates is key.  Zody said Democrats found 53 challengers for Republicans to go with 29 candidates in Democrat-held seats.  In total, Democrats were able to fill 82 of the 100 Indiana House seats and 23 of the 25 Senate seats on the ballot this year, according to Zody.

So, circling back to the U.S. Senate vacancy, we should know by this time next week who the new candidate will be.  In response to the Bayh interest, Roll Call has already changed the seat's rating from "likely Republican" to "tilts Democratic".  Todd Young is the Republican nominee.

What a difference a day makes in Indiana politics.

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