I made predictions on the Civil Discourse Now about 10 days ago. I am now updating my selection. I still predict an 18-11 Democratic majority on the council, but my pick in the Mayor's race has changed.
Republican Greg Ballard defeats Democrat Melina Kennedy 51-47, with Libertarian candidate Chris Bowen receiving 2%. If Kennedy would have been willing to challenge Ballard on his unpopular support corporate welfare, the result would have been far different.
Incumbent Democrat Jose Evans wins this increasingly Democratic district over Republican Susan Blair. Libertarian Michael Bishop is also a candidate.
Incumbent Democrat Angela Mansfield wins this increasingly Democratic district over Republican challenger Anthony Simons. Libertarian Sam Goldstein (the leading all-time votegetter as a Libertarian statewide candidate) finishes third.
|Council President |
Incumbent Republican Council President Ryan Vaughn edges out Democrat Len Farber. Democrats on election night will have wished they put more resources into this district.
This is the first of four council districts held by Republicans in which the Democrats now have a majority. I predict that District 4 will go to Republican Christine Scales over Democrat Kostas Poulakidas. One thing we have learned from previous campaigns, is you never ever alter an opponent’s face on a mailing. After this election, I think we can add another one – never send out a pretend mailing from your opponent with a pretend signature. I think the backlash will carry Scales to victory.
In this, the only safe Republican seat on the northside of Indianapolis, Republican incumbent councilor Ginny Cain will win re-election over Democrat Jackie Butler and Libertarian Christopher Hodapp.
|Councilor Janice McHenry|
Republican Sahara Williams and Libertarian Matt Stone were guests on our show, Civil Discussion Now. They are impressive candidates. However, the southern Pike and northern Wayne district is about 80% Democrat. Democrat incumbent Maggie Lewis should win easily.
While Republican challenger Stu Rhodes is a former councilor, this Center and Washington Township District is a solidly Democratic district. Democrat Monroe Gray wins re-election.
Republican Sally Spiers was a guest on Civil Discourse Now. She is a very impressive candidate. But even an impressive candidate is ultimately at the mercy of the numbers. I have to give the race to Democrat Joe Simpson to replace Democrat councilor Jackie Nytes who is leaving the council.
A solidly Democratic district, I have to give the edge to William (Duke) Oliver over Republican Barbara Holland and Libertarian Joell Palmer.
Another solidly Democratic district, Steve Tally will make a return to the Council. Republican Mike Healy and Libertarian Tom Mulcahy are his opponents.
|Challenger Regina Marsh|
Democrat Regina Marsh appears to be a good candidate and I believe she will prevail over McQuillen on Election Day. I do expect that this will be the closest race in the county. Shawn Sullivan is a Libertarian candidate in the district.
This Republican west side district, concentrated in Wayne Township, has just under a 60% Republican baseline. In a good Democratic year, without a Republican incumbent, the D’s could pick it up. Not this year though. Republican councilor Bob Lutz prevails in his re-election bid over Democrat Jared Evans and Libertarian Jason Sipe.
This westsdie district is directly east of District 13 and is more competitive. In 2010, it had about a 57% Republican baseline. It is trending more Democratic, but not enough to unseat Republican incumbent Marilyn Pfisterer. I expect her to prevail by about 8-10 points over Democrat Maxine King, a former Wayne Township Small Claims Court judge.
|Council Candidate Vop Osili|
I had previously misidentified this as a safe seat, i.e. one where the party in power had more than a 60% baseline. Actually this district, held by Brian Mahern, is only 58% Democratic. In a good Republican year, the GOP might have a shot at picking up the district. Brian Mahern though is popular in his district and one of the smartest members of the council. He should coast to a second term over his Republican opponent Bill Bruten.
This district is just outside the range of being competitive, having a 60% plus Democratic baseline in 2010. Democrat Mary Moriarity-Adams should win easily over Gary Whitmore.
Democrat councilor Vernon Brown easily wins re-election over Republican Mike Heady in this strong Democratic district.
I am shocked as to why the Democrats didn’t put resources into this district which has only a 55% Republican baseline. Republican councilor Susie Day is far from a dynamic candidate and Democrat Frank Mascari is well known as a long time businessman in Beech Grove and narrowly lost a race for Mayor of Beech Grove in 2010. I think it could have been a fairly easy pickup for the Democrats put resources into the race. (According to the last report, Mascari had only raised $700, which he had personally contributed to the campaign.) The fact this race was not targeted shows to me that Democratic chairman Ed Treacy would rather have a smaller majority on the council, rather than a larger majority who might have members willing to oppose the county chairman.
I expect Republican Councilor Susie Day to win re-election in a fairly close race.
This is another district which the Democrats had an outside chance of picking up, especially if the right type of race was run, a campaign which exposed unpopular votes by the incumbent Republican councilor Ben Hunter. The eastside district is just about 55% Republican and has been trending more Democratic over the years. Yet the Democrats appear to have chosen to not contest it with their nominee attorney Todd Woodmansee. Libertarian blogger Josh Featherstone is also a candidate in the district.
This Decatur Township district is held by Republican councilor Bob Cockrum who is not running for re-election. It is nearly a 70% Republican district though. Long-time Decatur Township officeholder Jason Holliday should prevail easily over Democrat Doug White.
|Councilor Jeff Cardwell|
This has been one of the more interesting races. Republican Jack Sandlin, whose became so unpopular as Township Trustee, that he in 2010 was booted out by Perry Township GOP voters, was elected in a vote of precinct committeemen to fill a council vacancy on the south side. Sandlin is being opposed by former Republican and now Libertarian at-large councilor Ed Coleman who has decided to try to win the southside council district rather than run at-large. While in my hear there is nothing I would like more than an independent-minded councilor liking Coleman actually asking tough questions on the council for a change, I just thing the power of the two party system is too strong. I have to give the edge to Sandlin.
This Franklin Township council district is the most Republican council district in the county. I expect incumbent Aaron Freeman to easily prevail over Democrat Mario Garza and Libertarian Kevin Vail.
At Large (4 elected)
|At-Large Candidate |
In 2007, Republicans won three of these four at-large races. (One at-large candidate, Ed Coleman changed party affiliation from Republican to Libertarian.) That was an extremely unusual result. I don’t buy for a second that these at-large races will automatically track the Mayor’s race. They are baseline races and reflect turnout not necessarily the Mayor’s race. (It’s just that in the past, the result of the Mayor’s race has normally tracked which party had a majority in the county.) I don’t expect that the Democrats miserable turnout of 2007 to be repeated.
|Libertarian At-Large |
Candidate Bill Levin
Nonetheless, at the end of the day, these are baseline races. I expect as the evening drags on, the Democrats lead among these four at-large races will grow larger and larger. If the Republicans win any of the at-large races, I’d be shocked.
Republican Mayor, with an 18-11 Democratic majority on the Council. The Democrats are going to wish they pushed harder to unseat Republican councilors (such as Vaughn, Hunter, Day and Pfisterer) because they were well within striking distance of a veto-proof majority (20 votes.), which would have been useful with a Republican Mayor.