Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Winners and Losers of Indiana 2010 Elections

Here is my uneducated, reactionary reaction to the election results.

The Winners

Governor Mitch Daniels and the state GOP: The Indiana GOP ran a heavy slate, running electable candidates in districts, some they haven't tried to seriously take in several election cycles. And Daniels used his muscle with his Aiming Higher PAC promoting these candidates. The state GOP and their respective county partners also ran competitive candidates in several congressional districts and managed to nationalize these elections, which paid off big.

Ambassador/lobbyist/former Senator/Senator-elect Dan Coats: As Paul Ogden has written, Dan Coats ran in a primary and it gave him a practice run and momentum for the general election, momentum that never left him. He held onto the Republican wave that 2010 presented him, with only a few Republicans upset enough about his carpetbagging to vote for Libertarian candidate Rebecca Sink-Burris.

The Libertarian Party of Indiana: Due to a mixture of more exposure from media and a better ground strategy, and two really bad candidates on the part of the GOP in the case of US Senate and Secretary of State, the LPIN might get more votes than they ever have before. Now let's see how many they can retain in future elections.

The Losers

Representative Brad Ellsworth: He didn't go through a primary, and stayed out of the public view for too long. His lack of name recognition hurt him, and he didn't get much support from the current office holder, Senator Evan Bayh, and the national party seemed quick to give up hope. However, this isn't a total loss for Ellsworth. He's normally the type of Democrat Hoosiers like. He's down, but he doesn't have to be out.

Thomas John and the Marion County Republicans: The strategy of the county GOP seems to concentrate on one race and hope the rest benefit from a trickle down effect. In 2007, the only At-Large council race the GOP supported was Kent Smith, even waving his slating fee. This time, the county GOP put all their chips in with the Prosecutor's race. Being the first to go negative hurt, and Massa never seemed to recover from that.

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