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Expert: Indiana's 2023 election results can't tell us much about what to expect in 2024

A sign in a parking lot that reads "Vote Here" with an American flag below it.
FILE PHOTO: Tyler Lake
Both Indiana Democrats and Republicans had reasons to celebrate 2023's election results.

Both the Indiana Democratic and Republican parties had reasons to celebrate Tuesday’s election results.

Democrats flipped mayoral seats in Evansville, Terre Haute and Lawrence, among others, while Republicans continued to strengthen their advantage in rural Indiana and regained some ground in Hamilton County, the northern suburbs of Indianapolis.

Mike Downs Center for Indiana Politics Director Emeritus Andrew Downs said, in a broad sense, it was a kind of status quo election.

“Both can say, ‘Yeah, we had a good night, we’re proud of ourselves,’” Downs said. “And really, in many respects, they will have to acknowledge they could’ve had better nights.”

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Downs said it’s hard to predict much about 2024 from 2023’s results, since this year’s races are so much more locally-focused.

“Potholes are not dealt with at the state level. Picking up leaves and snow — those aren’t dealt with at the state level,” Downs said.

Downs did say that both parties can focus on areas where they scored key victories and look to build from those bases of support for next year.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.