Dan Parker’s March Madness

It is March Madness so let’s play in metaphorical terms.

Coach Dan Parker looks down his bench for some substitution relief. His starters haven’t exactly been getting the job done. Bayh quit on the team before the clock ran out, and when fans thought Ellsworth would be an All-Star he busted like Greg Oden in the NBA. With the clock ticking Coach Parker has got to be worried. His roster lost in a blowout in 2010. Players like Baron Hill and Trent Van Haaften went down hard, along with every statewide candidate on the Democrat ticket.

Options for the 2012 matches seem to be slim. We could see John Gregg or Joe Donnelly run in statewide races but if those are your two strongest contenders off the bench then you may be in for a long season. If Joe Donnelly decides to run for statewide office in 2012 Coach Parker now has to play tough defense in a congressional district they could barely hold in 2010. Who comes off the bench to go head-to-head versus someone like Jackie Walorski? No strong names come to mind.

John Gregg may have been a giant in state politics, but that was nearly a decade ago. If he runs for Governor, he’ll most likely be battling the GOP team’s current MVP, Rep. Mike Pence. That isn’t exactly a fun matchup for Coach Parker. I’m sure Coach Parker and his team won’t back down from a tough game, then again about 39 players on their team currently have.

When all is said and done, the vulnerability of the Democrat team in 2012 is very apparent. We could potentially see another massive blowout resulting in the pickup of a congressional seat, more gains in the General Assembly, and four more years of a GOP controlled executive branch. Coach Parker is scrambling to sub players in who can contend. Unfortunately, it’s hard to score when you’re always on defense.

District Maps? Who Needs Them? The 2012 General Election Has Begun.

Today, Jackie Walorski announced she will be running for Congress in the 2nd District, wherever that may be, in 2012. One side effect of the ridiculous two-month legislative walk-out from Democrats is the lack of district maps for the 2012 election cycle.  It is tough for a candidate to announce they plan to run in a district they do not even know the lines for but they cannot exactly just wait on the sidelines. 

Walorski, however, is better positioned to move forward in announcing her campaign since her home is fairly safely in the 2nd District.  That and the fact that it has long been rumored that a Congressional District will be drawn with her in mind in exchange for her willingness to run against Donnelly in 2010. 

There is a reason Joe Donnelly is interested in the U.S. Senate seat–his Congressional District will be fairly cozy for a Republican in 2012.

Below is Walorski’s announcement email.

Dear Supporter,

As one of my loyal supporters I wanted you to be one of the first to know that I am running for the United States Congress.

I am running because I believe we need to get our country back on track. We need to get our economy moving again so businesses can create jobs; and I believe it’s time to stop the reckless government spending that drives up the federal deficit while passing on massive debt to our children.

The current leadership in our country has failed us. They have promised more jobs, and less spending, but we continue to see record deficits, and unemployment in North Central Indiana still remains over ten percent. In the State House, I stood up to the big spenders to cut waste and balance the budget without raising taxes, and I understand that we need to keep taxes low and regulation less burdensome so that our small businesses can grow and create jobs.

I pledge to you that in Congress I will vote to cut spending and get our nation on track to balance its budget. It’s going to require tough decisions, and the ability to stand strong for what you and I believe in, but that is what leadership is.

I have been humbled by the outpouring of support and encouragement by my friends, volunteers, and Hoosiers across our district. I want you to know that no matter what the district map ultimately looks like, or who my opponent eventually is, I couldn’t be more committed to the 2nd District, and fighting for a smaller more responsible government and a strong economy.

 You have stood with me before, and I ask you to stand with me again as we, together, work to make the changes necessary in our country.

Yours truly,

 

Jackie Walorski

The Prodigal Bloggers Return

Faithful readers, we’re back.

We took a bit of a Spring Break last week but we promise we’re back to our regularly scheduled blogging. 

Frankly, we aren’t even sure how much we missed on our little blogging break.  You have to admit, Indiana’s political world is a little stagnant right now.

House Democrats still aren’t doing their jobs. 

 Senate Republicans are still spending more time on social issues than important fiscal concerns. 

Governor Daniels still hasn’t said if he is running for President or not. 

And the U.S. Senate race is turning into a negative campaign with both sides accusing the other of being negative while doing so themselves.

No wonder we did not feel the need to blog.  It seems the only thing that will be changing on any of that this week is that we’ll be back to writing about it.

Word on Washington Street: Illinois State Legislature Looking to Tax Democrats in Exile?

We’re hearing rumblings that some folks in the Illinois State Legislature are looking to start taxing some of the Democrat legislators who are holding up legislation from exile. 

The thought is that these legislators are conducting business from the state of Illinois and should have to pay some taxes on it.  Just one more reason the House Democrats should come back to Indiana and get some work done.

AFSCME Unions Endorse Ballard over Kennedy

Yesterday afternoon, Mayor Greg Ballard was endorsed by all four local AFSCME unions.  These four unions represent all non-uniform city union employees.  Union leaders say this is the first time that all the local unions have endorsed one candidate for Mayor.

A few of the local union presidents were on Abdul’s radio show this morning and they said it boils down to Mayor Greg Ballard, the things he has done for employees and the way he has approached them.  Ballard gave them a seat at the table when making decisions about equipment upgrades like the new snow plows and both sides have worked together to address issues.

This is a blow to the Kennedy campaign and we cannot imagine they were expecting it.  As much as it is expected for Melina Kennedy to get an endorsement from EMILY’s List, it is also expected that the Democrat nominee will receive the AFSCME endorsement or at least have enough pull to keep an endorsement from happening before the Democratic primary is even over.

Over at Indy Democrat, Jon Easter was unclear on how Ballard could have all the local union endorsements when Melina Kennedy has posted on her website and in a release that she received the endorsement of  AFSCME Local 1887 which represented the Parks employees.  

Kennedy received that endorsement in November of 2009.  AFSCME Local 1887 has since been rolled into another AFSCME local union.  This leads us to ask two questions.  First, why would a union endorse a candidate a full two years before their election?  We’re going to guess it is because the union president knew they were being combined with the another union that would not be supporting Kennedy. 

And the second question is why does Melina Kennedy have the endorsement of union that does not exist on her website still?

Statehouse Wars: No House Session but Plenty of Protests

Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that the Indiana House has entered week three of the standoff that has halted any legislative progress made this session.  Things are at a standstill but there still seem to be plenty of folks willing to protest.

Last weekend, teachers protested outside the Statehouse.  Today, pro-life and pro-choice advocates are at the Statehouse debating funding for Planned Parenthood. 

We hear the unions will hold a large rally where they plan to bus in thousands this Thursday.  We’ve also heard there will be a rally against the immigration bill next week. 

Call us crazy, but it seems like there is an awful lot of rallying and not a lot of legislating.  At what point are we going to get sick of the legislature not doing what it was elected to do and have a rally about that?

Melina Kennedy Endorsed by Emily’s List

Melina Kennedy was endorsed by Emily’s List today.  Click here to read the full release.

We weren’t very surprised especially considering a line from the press release  saying, “EMILY’s List’s Political Opportunity Program (POP) helps pro-choice Democratic women.”

Congratulations, Melina.  You are the only woman in the race and, thus, their only choice.

You’re number one!

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