The coming year will be an election year; meaning would-be candidates should be putting the finishing touches on getting their campaigns together to run for whichever offices they are pursuing.
Purdue University-Fort Wayne political scientist Andy Downs is watching a few things closely as we enter yet another election year. He tells Indy Politics that one of the obvious races that Hoosiers should be paying attention to is Sen. Todd Young’s bid to seek a second term as senator from Indiana.
“Todd Young is sitting in a pretty good position,” Downs said. “Obviously there are some folks who are upset with some of the things he’s done. When you look at the totality of what he’s done, I think in many respects, he’s earned a lot of respect from both Republican and Independent voters.”
There are two Republicans making bids to primary Young in Danny Niederberger and John Piper.
“His primary challenge might be a little more exciting than one might think,” Downs added. “But, I think he should be able to win that and move into November and get through that relatively easily.”
Four Democrats will primary to challenge Young in the General election should he make it through the Republican primary. Hammond mayor Tom McDermott Haneefah Khaaliq, Valerie Lin McCray, and Aleem Young are all listed as candidates in the Democratic primary.
One the state level, Downs says the race that he will be keeping an eye on is the race for state treasurer. There are four Republicans vying for the position with current treasurer Kelly Mitchell having to step aside due to term limits.
Morgan County Republican Party leader Daniel Elliott, former George W. Bush administration spokesperson Pete Seat, Fort Wayne City Clerk Lana Keesling and Boone County Council President Elise Nieshalla will all primary to replace Mitchell.
Because there are so many candidates for one party, Downs anticipates that each of the candidates will have to relate to voters on a more personal level.
“This is a campaign where you can contact every voter, and should,” he said. “The voters expect it, because ‘you want to represent my party, and we’re going to pick you at a convention, then doggone it, I better meet you, I better know you. I better understand where you stand on issues.”
The deadline for candidates to file for election in any race next year is Feb. 4. Election day in 2022 is Nov. 8.