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2010 Indiana elections

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Indiana elections, 2010

← 2008 November 2, 2010 2012 →

Elections were held in Indiana on Tuesday, November 2, 2010. Primary elections were held on May 4, 2010.

Election information


Turnout in the primaries was 20.86%, with 892,403 ballots cast.[1]

Turnout in the general election was 41.26%, with 1,786,213 ballots cast.[2]


United States Senate

On February 15, 2010, incumbent Senator Evan Bayh announced that he would not seek reelection. This shocked the Democratic base,[who?] which had expected Bayh to seek a third term in the Senate and had thus not fielded any other candidates. On May 15, the executive committee of the Indiana Democratic Party announced that Representative Brad Ellsworth would be the party's nominee for Senator.[3] Dan Coats, the winner of the five-way Republican primary election, was Ellsworth's main competitor in the race, along with Libertarian Rebecca Sink-Burris, and two independent candidates in the general election.[4][5][6] During the campaign, Ellsworth attacked Coats' record as a lobbyist, while Coats branded Ellsworth as a puppet of President Obama and then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. On election day, Coats won 54.4% of the vote to Ellsworth's 40%. Rebecca Sink-Burris received 5.4%.

United States House of Representatives

All of Indiana's nine seats in the United States House of Representatives were up for election in 2010. In the United States House of Representatives elections in Indiana, 2008, Democrats had won five of Indiana's nine seats in the House, but public dissatisfaction with Democratic President Obama, combined with the birth of the Tea Party movement,[citation needed] led Republicans to win back two of these seats, giving them six seats to the Democrats' three.


Secretary of State

Secretary of State of Indiana election, 2010

← 2006 November 2, 2010 2014 →
Nominee Charles P. White Vop Osili Mike Wherry
Party Republican Democratic Libertarian
Popular vote 976,810 632,129 100,795
Percentage 57.13% 36.97% 5.90%

Indiana SoS Election Results by County, 2010.svg
County Results

White:      40-50%      50-60%      60-70%      70-80%


Secretary of State before election

Todd Rokita

Elected Secretary of State

Charles P. White

Incumbent Sec. Todd Rokita (R) was term-limited and could not run for reelection. Candidates to replace Rokita included Democrat Vop Osili,[8] Republican Charlie White,[9] and Libertarian Mike Wherry.[10] At the time, no Democrat had won a Secretary of State election in 20 years,[11] and only three Democrats had won the office since 1964.[12]

Olisi was a first-time candidate for office.[13][14] He was an architect from Indianapolis.[14][15] Olisi defeated Tom McKenna to win the Democratic nomination for Secretary of State at the state's Democratic Party Convention in Indianapolis, where Olisi's name was placed into nomination by Tom Henry.[15] Tom McKenna, Olisi's opponent for the Democratic nomination, was a private attorney and a deputy prosecutor who had previously served in positions under governors Evan Bayh, Frank O'Bannon, and Joe Kernan, including as the head of the former Indiana Department of Commerce, an administrative judge law for the Indiana Department of Labor, and Kernan's chief of staff.[15]

Olisi promised to connect new businesses with state economic development programs and with companies that might be interested in their services.[16] Olisi promised to support exploring efforts to modernize the voting process, including looking at online voter registration, longer voting hours, more early voting locations and no-excuse absentee voting.[15] He voiced opposition to Indiana's voter identification law, arguing that it disenfranchised between 40,000 and 200,000 Indiana voters.[16] Olisi's campaign placed an emphasis on job-creation.[17][18]

White promised to defend Indiana's voter ID law to ensure, "fair and accurate elections.”[12] However, questions were raised about whether White had falsified his driver's license and residency, and therefore voted illegally, committing voter fraud[12][19]

One important facet of the Secretary of State's position was that, as chief elections officer, they would decide control of the Indiana House in the instance it were to be split 50-50.[15]

Until September, the race had been seen as safely Republican.[19] By October it was seen as a "tossup.[19]

In what was seen to be shaping up as a Republican wave election, Osili hoped he could attract ticket splitting voters.[20]


Vop Osili (D)
  • Fort Wayne Journal Gazette[23]


Poll source Date(s)
Margin of
Charles P.
WISH-TV [12][19] Early October 39% 29% 5% 26%


White won the election with 57% of the vote, but was soon charged with voter fraud, and was convicted of this offense and removed from office in December 2011.[citation needed]

General election results[7]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Charles P. White 976,810 57.13%
Democratic Vop Osili 632,129 36.97%
Libertarian Mike Wherry 100,795 5.90%
Total votes 1,709,734

White was removed from office on February 4, 2012 after a jury convicted him on six felony counts including perjury, theft and voter fraud.[24] A ruling by Judge Louis Rosenberg had found that since White had violated election law, and twas therefore ineligible to run, the Recount Commission should remove White from office and declare Osili as the winner by default.[25] This decision was reversed. Ultimately, however, the courts ruled that, instead, Governor Mitch Daniels would be able to fill the vacancy created by White's removal from office.


Indiana State Treasurer election, 2010

← 2006 November 2, 2010 2014 →
StateTreasurerRichardMourdock (1).jpg
PeteButtigieg (1).JPG
Nominee Richard Mourdock Pete Buttigieg
Party Republican Democratic
Popular vote 1,053,527 633,243
Percentage 62.5% 37.5%

Indiana State Treasurer Election Results by County, 2010.svg
County Results

Mourdock:      50-60%      60-70%      70-80%      80-90%


Treasurer before election

Richard Mourdock

Elected Treasurer

Richard Mourdock

Incumbent Republican Treasurer Richard Mourdock ran for reelection.[26] His Democratic opponent was Pete Buttigieg.[27]

Democrat Buttigieg was considered a long-shot.[28][29] Buttigieg was a political newcomer, a first-time candidate, and had never held public office,[13][29] even proclaiming on his campaign website, "I'm a businessman who has never run for office before, but I have the education, experience and energy to lend a hand at this critical time in our state’s history."[30] Buttigieg also lacked name recognition.[29]

A main issue of contention was Mourdock's having invested $43 million of state pension funds and other state funds in Chrysler junk bonds, and having subsequently taken legal action tookin an attempt to stop Chrysler's bankruptcy plan (including the Chrysler-Fiat merger) from taking effect,[29][31][32][33][34][35][36] Buttigieg criticized Mourdock both of these actions.[29][32] Mourdock defended both actions[37][32][38]

Buttigieg urged Mourdock to hold a debate with him.[39][40][41] This was to no avail, ultimately.

Mourdock's candidacy was seen as benefiting from running in a very republican-favorable election cycle and from being in a Republican-leaning state, making the strong favorite to win.[42] In what was seen to be shaping up as a Republican wave election, Buttigieg hoped he could attract ticket splitting voters.[20]


Pete Buttigieg (D)
  • AFL–CIO[21]
  • Indiana State Teachers Association[22]
  • United Automobile Workers[43]
    • United Automobile Workers Citizenship and Legislative Committee[44]
    • United Automobile Workers Region 3 Victory Fund.[44]


Ahead of the election, the race was projected as leaning in Mourdock's favor.[48][49]

Mourdock won a second term as treasurer with 62% of the vote.

Mourdock was the state's top vote-getter, receiving a greater number of votes than any other Indiana candidate in the 2010 elections.[50][51]

General election results[7]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Richard Mourdock (incumbent) 1,053,527 62.46%
Democratic Pete Buttigieg 633,243 37.54%
Total votes 1,686,770


Indiana State Auditor election, 2010

← 2006 November 2, 2010 2014 →
Nominee Tim Berry Sam Locke
Party Republican Democratic
Popular vote 986,301 625,630
Percentage 58.36% 37.02%

Indiana Auditor Election Results by County, 2010.svg
County Results

Berry:      40-50%      50-60%      60-70%      70-80%
Locke:      40-50%


Auditor before election

Tim Berry

Elected Auditor

Tim Berry

Incumbent Republican Auditor Tim Berry ran for reelection.[52] He faced Democrat Sam Locke [53] and Libertarian Eric Knipe in the general election.[54] At the time, no Democrat had won a State Auditor election in 28 years.[11]

Locke was a first-time candidate for office.[13][14] He was a former United States Air Force officer[55] and a current non-profit consultant from Floyds Knobs.[14][15] He was unchallenged for the Democratic nomination.[15]

Locke pledged that, if elected, he would direct more state contracts to Indiana-based businesses.[56] Locke promised to find ways to save the state money.[15][16][18] Locke pledged to closely analyze state finances and attack wasteful spending.[17] He also promised to audit automatic payments made by the state to ensure that duplicate payments were not being made.[17] He also expressed an interest in making state transactions available and searchable in an online system.[17] Locke's campaign placed an emphasis on job-creation.[17][18][57] Locke promised that he would implement a more vigorous accounts payable and contract audit process.[57][58] He also promised to advocate for "top-down government reform", promising to advocate for consolidation of the agencies involved in financial planning at the state level.[57] He pledged to increase the usage of electronic records, phasing out the use of microfiche for record keeping.[57] He pledged to increase the accessibility of public information.[57] He also pledged that he would collaborate with other state officials to more accurately project the state's finances, arguing that a more "proactive approach" would negate the need for spending cuts proposed by the administration of Governor Mitch Daniels.[57] Locke also proposed implementing third-party recovery audits.[58] He promised to use the Auditor's office to cut "wasteful spending".[59]


Sam Locke (D)
Tim Berry (R)
  • Fort Wayne Journal Gazette[23]


Berry won reelection with 58% of the vote to Locke's 37%.

General election results[7]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Tim Berry 986,301 58.36%
Democratic Sam Locke 625,630 37.02%
Libertarian Eric Knipe 78,004 4.62%
Total votes 1,689,935

State Senate

25 seats in the Indiana Senate were up for election in 2010, a majority of which were won by the Republicans.

State House of Representatives

All 100 seats in the Indiana House of Representatives were up for election in 2010. A large majority of these were seized by the Republicans, giving them legislative dominance, but not enough to meet quorum without Democratic attendance.[citation needed]

Judicial positions

Multiple judicial positions were up for election in 2010.[60]

Ballot measures

One statewide ballot measure was certified:

  1. Add a property tax cap amendment to the Indiana Constitution[61]

The measure passed at the polls, with 28% of voters against the proposition.


Many elections for county offices were also held on November 2, 2010.


  1. ^ "2010 Primary Election Tuesday, May 4, 2010 Primary Election Turnout and Registration" (PDF). Indiana Secretary of State. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d "2010 General Election Tuesday, November 2, 2010 General Election Turnout and Registration" (PDF). Indiana Secretary of State. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
  3. ^ "Dems make Ellsworth official pick to face Coats". Associated Press. May 15, 2010.
  4. ^ "Dan Coats for Indiana". Archived from the original on August 31, 2010. Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  5. ^ "Brad Ellsworth | Ellsworth for Indiana U.S. Senate Campaign". Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  6. ^ "Elect Rebecca Sink-Burris to United States Senate". April 13, 2010. Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  7. ^ a b c d e f "2010 Indiana Election Results" (PDF). Voter Portal. Retrieved May 2, 2019.
  8. ^ "Vop Osili for Indiana Secretary of State|Democrat". June 26, 2010. Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  9. ^ "Home • Charlie White for Secretary of State". Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  10. ^
  11. ^ a b Allen, Kevin (June 30, 2010). "Statewide Democratic candidates visit city". South Bend Tribune.
  12. ^ a b c d Sautter, Chris (October 14, 2010). "Can Vop pull it off?" (PDF). Howey Politics Indiana. 16 (10). Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  13. ^ a b c "Democratic candidates swing through FW". WLFI-TV. June 29, 2010.
  14. ^ a b c d "NEWS: United Democratic ticket hits road to talk jobs". Pete for Indiana. June 28, 2019. Retrieved September 19, 2019.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h "Democrats put rookies in state races". The Journal Gazette. June 27, 2010.
  16. ^ a b c Foulkes, Arthur (June 29, 2010). "Democrats gather in Vigo to support statewide candidates". Tribune-Star.
  17. ^ a b c d e Mann, David A. (June 29, 2010). "Candidates push job creation on two-day state tour". News and Tribune.
  18. ^ a b c "Trio Of Democrats Campaigning Across The State". Indiana's News Center. June 29, 2010.[dead link]
  19. ^ a b c d Howey, Brian A. (October 7, 2010). "Democrats to raise ethical issues on Bischoff challenger McMillin" (PDF). Howey Politics Indiana. 16 (9). Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  20. ^ a b Carden, Dan (October 30, 2010). "Dem statewide candidates hit road together". Times of Northwest Indiana.
  21. ^ a b c "AFL CIO Endorsements 2010" (PDF). Local 1010 Steelworker. East Chicago, Indiana. 21 (2): 16.
  22. ^ a b c "Endorsed Candidates in Fall 2010 Election". Kankakee Valley Teachers Association. Retrieved October 22, 2019.
  23. ^ a b c "Vital administrators". Fort Wayne Journal Gazette. October 16, 2010.
  24. ^ "Indiana election chief found guilty of voter fraud". The Mercury News. Associated Press.[dead link]
  25. ^ Ruling by Louis Rosenberg
  26. ^ "Richard Mourdock for State Treasurer of Indiana". Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  27. ^ "Pete Buttigieg for South Bend Mayor". Retrieved December 19, 2016.
  28. ^ Colombo, Hayleigh (October 14, 2017). "Some national Democrats swoon over South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg". Indianapolis Business Journal. Retrieved May 6, 2019.
  29. ^ a b c d e Webb, Jon (April 3, 2019). "Pete Buttigieg lost his first race to a former Vanderburgh County commissioner". Courrier Press. Retrieved September 15, 2019.
  30. ^ "Why I'm Running". Pete for Indiana. Archived from the original on April 20, 2016. Retrieved September 15, 2019.
  31. ^ "Buttigieg Plans State Treasurer Run". Times Union. March 2, 2010. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  32. ^ a b c Howey, Brian (July 3, 2010). "HOWEY: A fascinating race for state treasurer". News and Tribune. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
  33. ^ Howey, Brian (July 4, 2010). "Chrysler investment haunts GOP treasurer". The Michigan City News Dispatch. Retrieved September 17, 2019.
  34. ^ Howey, Brian A. (June 10, 2010). "Obama's impact in Indiana profound" (PDF). Howey Politics Indiana. 15 (37). Retrieved September 19, 2019.
  35. ^ Ruthart, Bill (October 19, 2010). "War of words has a bigger audience this time". Indianapolis Star.
  36. ^ Kelly, Niki (October 17, 2010). "More to this race than Chrysler suit". Fort Worth Journal Gazette.
  37. ^ "Incumbent treasurer Mourdock faces young Dem challenger". Post Tribune of Northwest Indiana. October 17, 2010.[dead link]
  38. ^ Holtz, Maribeth (May 6, 2010). "State Treasurer candidate speaks in Marion". Marion Chronicle Tribune.
  39. ^ "NEWS: BUTTIGIEG RENEWS CALL FOR DEBATES". Pete for Indiana. October 6, 2010. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  40. ^ "News:IN WAKE OF MOURDOCK OUTBURST, BUTTIGIEG CALLS FOR A FULL DEBATE". Pete for Indiana. September 29, 2010. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  41. ^ "NEWS: MOURDOCK FINDS TIME FOR BIZARRE VISIT TO OPPONENT'S HOME, BUT NOT DEBATES". Pete for Indiana. October 21, 2010. Retrieved September 21, 2019.
  42. ^ Colwell, Jack (October 3, 2010). "Standing firmly on bad ground". South Bend Tribune.
  43. ^ Hodge, John (September 29, 2010). "Treasurer candidate counts UAW retirees as strong supporters". New Castle Courier Times.
  44. ^ a b "Indiana UAW CAP endorses Pete Buttigieg for state treasurer". Pete for Indiana. June 24, 2010. Retrieved September 19, 2019.
  45. ^ "Pete Buttigieg for State Treasurer". Indiana Daily Student. November 1, 2010.
  46. ^ "OUR OPINION: BUTTIGIEG FOR TREASURER". South Bend Tribune. October 29, 2010.
  47. ^ "EDITORIAL: We endorse Buttigieg for state treasurer". The Times of Northwest Indiana. October 29, 2010.
  48. ^ Howey, Brian A. (October 14, 2010). "Rokita warns candidates on ISTA campaign funds" (PDF). Howey Politics Indiana. 16 (10). Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  49. ^ Boyce, Brian (October 30, 2010). "Democrats stage rally to encourage supporters to keep fighting". Tribune-Star. Retrieved September 21, 2019.
  50. ^ Marcus, Morton J. (November 3, 2010). "Self-employment gap endangers state future" (PDF). Howey Politics Indiana. 16 (14). Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  51. ^ Hayden, Maureen (November 9, 2010). "State's top vote-getter credits Chrysler bankruptcy fight for election win". News and Tribune. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
  52. ^ "Berry for Indiana". Berry for Indiana. Archived from the original on October 22, 2010. Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  53. ^ "Sam Locke for Indiana State Auditor". Archived from the original on July 11, 2010. Retrieved August 21, 2010.
  54. ^ "(no title)". Retrieved December 16, 2016. Cite uses generic title (help)
  55. ^ Boyce, Brian (October 30, 2010). "Democrats stage rally to encourage supporters to keep fighting". Tribune-Star. Retrieved September 19, 2019.
  56. ^ "Candidates visit Lafayette". WLFI-TV. June 30, 2010.
  57. ^ a b c d e f "Issues and Concerns". Locke for Auditor. Archived from the original on October 22, 2010.
  58. ^ a b "Locke to unveil four major policy initiatives; proposes deeper payable audits". Locke for Auditor. Archived from the original on October 23, 2010.
  59. ^ "Locke announces more innovations by targeting state waste". Locke for Indiana. Archived from the original on October 23, 2010. Retrieved January 2, 2020.
  60. ^ "Indiana judicial elections, 2010 - Judgepedia". Archived from the original on July 22, 2010. Retrieved December 19, 2016.
  61. ^ "Indiana 2010 ballot measures - Ballotpedia". Archived from the original on August 6, 2010. Retrieved December 19, 2016.

External links

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