Early voting in Indianapolis has come to a close with the total number of early votes last year, from 10,000 down to not quite 9,000.
Republican Greg Ballard has led this race from the beginning and he led in the WISH-TV/Franklin College Poll. But Democrats have a big advantage in Indianapolis. Now it’s a question of which party does the best job of getting voters to the polls.
At a south side restaurant, one of numerous stops today, Melina Kennedy greeted voters alongside Sheriff John Layton and the biggest name in Indiana Democratic politics, Evan Bayh. The former Senator also helped arrange recorded phone messages to voters from former President Bill Clinton. When asked if his goal was to energize Democrats, Bayh said, “Oh, I think that’s right. If you look at the election four years ago turnout was very, very low which is unfortunate because mayor is an important job.”
“They need to get out and vote,” he said.
“He brings a good perspective on small businesses, job creation, I’m proud to have his support,” said Kennedy of Bayh, emphasizing her top themes at the end of the campaign.
Meantime, on the north side, Greg Ballard volunteers took over Dick Lugar phone bank for the day replacing phone messages from Rudy Guiliani sent out over the weekend and Lieutenant Governor Becky Skillman showed up along with the mayor to provide encouragement. “When he (Ballard) was elected four years ago he had a lot to prove but I think he’s done that,” said Skillman. “Here you have a guy who gets it.”
Ask Ballard how he feels and he says. “Pretty good right now, pretty good.” But there is no backing off because even Democrats who lost statewide races last year carried Marion County easily. “So, it’s important for us to bring all the resources to bear to make sure that the city continues to move forward,” says Ballard.
Meantime Melina Kennedy is not giving up. “And I’m just continuing to talk to voters about tomorrow,” she says.
The finish line is 24 hours away.