The Indiana Democratic candidates for statewide office share a common theme: it’s time for an end to one-party rule in Hoosier state government.
Democratic delegates met in Indianapolis Saturday for their biannual party convention.
Each member of the Democratic statewide ticket emphasized the need to eliminate Republican control at the Statehouse. Or, as Treasurer candidate John Aguilera put it:
"I intend to get rid of the one-party rule and make America nice again," Aguilera says.
Auditor candidate Joselyn Whitticker says Democratic victories will help restore a balance of power.
"The reason I need to be there right now – we don’t have a watchdog," Whitticker says.
Secretary of State candidate Jim Harper was the most specific. He says he’ll use the office to advocate for changes in the Hoosier election system.
"It’s time for a Secretary of State who will fight back against this voter suppression agenda," Harper says.
Each of the statewide candidates was unopposed at the convention.
Incumbent U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) says Democrats have a “great story to tell” when it comes to the health care debate this election cycle.
Donnelly’s comments came as he sought to fire up Democratic delegates during the convention.
Donnelly – as he has since he cast it – defended his vote for the Affordable Care Act. And he touted his vote against a Republican measure last year that would have repealed the federal health care law.
"We were able to protect health care by one vote," Donnelly says. "You gave me that vote – I took it to protect health care for over 400,000 Hoosiers."
Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, in his keynote speech to the convention, emphasized the importance of this year’s election. He argues the country’s future is at stake.
"We have to show up in every corner of the state and for every race," Holder says.
State Democratic delegates also approved the party’s platform, its value statements.
There was some controversy at the Indiana GOP convention over an intraparty fight on platform language to define marriage as between a man and a woman – language overwhelmingly approved by GOP delegates.
Indiana Democratic Party official Dana Black made sure to note that as she presented her party’s platform.
“Because, see, unlike that other party who is still fighting 1952 issues, we are flexible and we can deal with the issues that are right in front of us today,” Black says.
The Indiana Democratic Party platform strongly backs LGBT rights.