Former beauty queen runs for CongressAugust 7th, 2012 at 4:52 pm by Jim Shella under Jim Shella's Political Blog
Politics has been described occasionally as show business for ugly people. So, can a beauty queen be successful?
Shelli Yoder is about to find out.
A former Miss Indiana, Yoder is running for Congress this year and she was on the campaign trail today in the 9th Congressional District that stretches from the Ohio River all the way up to Marion County. The first-time candidate who came out of nowhere to win a competitive primary doesn’t mind telling you that 20 years ago, in 1992, she wore a crown and almost won the big prize, Miss America. “Yes, second runner up,” she says, “and you know what’s great about that program, it helped me get through college.”
It also, she says, gave her the confidence to campaign against incumbent Republican Todd Young who says he’s not concentrating on Yoder. “You know, in the end this campaign’s not gonna be about my opponent,” he said, “or about me really, I hope. It’s gonna be about ideas, solutions and more than anything trust.”
Yoder, on the other hand, wants the campaign to be about her. “I’m a fighter for working Hoosiers,” she says. “I’m an advocate for the middle class. That’s why I got into this race.”
None of that changes the fact that Young, a first term Congressman who defeated incumbent Baron Hill two years ago, is the favorite and Shelli Yoder is underdog. One problem for candidates in the 9th Congressional district is that, to be successful, they must buy television time in both Indianapolis and Louisville. That puts a premium on fundraising and that’s where Shelli Yoder faces her biggest challenge.