INdiana Systemic Thinking

January 26, 2008

IN U.S. Rep. News

In the third district, U.S. Rep Mark Souder announced he is cosponsoring the Economic Growth Act of 2008.  This act would allow businesses to fully expense assets at the time of purchase, reduce the top corporate tax rate from 35% to 25%, end capital gains on inflation, and simplify the capital gains rate structure.  You can read more here.

Additionally, H/T to Blue Indiana and Fort Wayne Observed for picking up the news of Michael Montagano’s scheduled announcement that he will seek the democratic nomination for the congressional seat currently held by Souder.

In the fifth district, (stay with me here)  Andre Carson, grandson of the late U.S. Rep. Julia Carson, will seek the democratic party’s nomination for the U.S. House in May.  This will follow a special election in March, where he is seeking the same seat.  In the March race, he will oppose Indiana State Rep. John Elrod.  Because of the special election, it is entirely possible the two will oppose each other in elections in both March and November.  Carson’s announcement is here.

 In the ninth district, Mike Sodrel has filed to seek the republican nomination for the U.S. district representative seat.  If successful, it will be the fourth time he and current incumbent Baron Hill have faced off.  Sodrel lost the seat two years ago to Hill.  You can read more here

January 20, 2008

Bayh to Name Post Office

This from the Indianapolis Star.  Sen. Evan Bayh will ask that an Indianapolis Post Office branch be named for the late U.S. Rep. Julia Carson.  Here is the story:

U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., announced Saturday that he plans to introduce legislation to rename the Mapleton annex post office in Indianapolis as the Julia M. Carson Post Office, in honor of the late congresswoman.

Carson advocated for the construction of the Mapleton branch, 2650 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St., which opened on July 15, 2005, and she attended the building’s dedication ceremony, Bayh’s office said in a news release.

Bayh plans to introduce the legislation when the Senate reconvenes Tuesday. Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., has agreed to co-sponsor the bill, the release said.
Carson, a Democratic member of the U.S. House from Indianapolis, died Dec. 15 after a battle with lung cancer.
She served in public office for more than 35 years as a member of the state House of Representatives and state Senate and as Center Township trustee.

January 6, 2008

IN 7th, Week In Review

Here is what happened this week in the 7th Indiana U.S. House Distrct left vacant by the death of 6 term Democrat Julia Carson:

On the Democrat side, Indianpolis Council member (and grandson of Julia Carson) Andre Carson, Marion County Treasurer Michael Rodman, and Ice Miller Attorney Randle Pollard are the only three candidates to officially file their intention to run in the special election.  Other expected Democratic candidates are state Reps. David Orentlicher, Gregory W. Porter and Carolene Mays of Indianapolis, former state party chairman Robin Winston and former state health commissioner Woody Myers.  Advance Indiana reported Randle Pollard set up a blog to inform voters of his candidacy.  The democrats will caucus on January 12 to choose their nominee for the special election.  The deadline to file is Wednesday.

The Republicans will hold their caucus on January 13.  State Rep. Jon Elrod of Indianapolis has announced his intention to run for the seat. But GOP party officials said no one had submitted the paperwork to run by Thursday, a week before the deadline.  However, today the Indy Star is reporting, “Tom Rose, a public policy adviser to former Mayor Stephen Goldsmith” has filed the appropriate paperwork.  The deadline to file is Thursday.

 Neither party wanted to go without representation until the May primary, when Governor Daniels suggested the special election be held.  The parties initially agreed on a March 1 date, but that date did not meet the statutory requirements.  Later in the week they agreed to hold the election on March 11. 

Confused?  Your not the only one.  However, the Indy Star Published this timeline to help:


Sources:  Indy Star and Indy Star unless indicated above.

November 28, 2007

Carson in “hospice care and can barely speak”

Channel 6 News in Indianapolis has this update on 7th district Congresswoman Julia Carson.

“The Rev. Jonathan Baily Sr., of Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church, spoke with Carson Sunday morning and said she is under hospice care and can barely speak. According to Baily, those close to Carson knew she had cancer.

“I was there when the doctor told her she was on hospice, whether she wanted to go to the hospital or stay home,” Baily said. At the same doctor’s visit, Carson asked how long she had to live, 6News’ Cheryl Jackson reported. “He said, ‘It’s not our thing to tell you how long, just make you comfortable,'” Baily said.  Baily met Carson when he began preaching at an Indianapolis church in 1967.”

In a related story, the same media outlet is running an unscientific poll of it’s website readers.  The one question poll asks, “In light of her grim prognosis, do you think Rep. Julia Carson should resign her seat?”  Of the 1432 who responded (as of this post), 87% felt she should resign.  Should Representative Carson die while in office, or resign her seat, she would be replaced by Special Election called by Governor Mitch Daniels.

Related posts: here, here, and here.

November 27, 2007

Carson Decides Not to Run: Important to Country

According to a storyin the Indianapolis Star, U.S. Representative Julia Carson has decided not to run again in 2008.  She announced on Sunday she has terminal lung cancer.  Yesterday, the Blogmeister expressed some anger and dismay at those who are lining up for the seat.  However, since Rep. Carson has officially decided not to run again, it seems more appropriate to discuss the implications of her decision.  Thankfully, those who would like the seat are keeping tight lipped about their plans.  However, the Seventh District is important and deserves some discussion.

From the Indianapolis Star:

“Democrats won control of both the House and Senate in the 2006 elections. There are now 233 Democrats and 200 Republicans in the House, with two vacancies left by the deaths of Republicans Paul Gillmor of Ohio and Jo Ann Davis of Virginia.

Open seats are generally hotly contested by both parties, but it remains to be seen how much effort Republicans would put into trying to claim Carson’s district.

Far more Republicans than Democrats are retiring from the U.S. House — 17 Republicans, with seven others possible, compared with only four Democrats and two Democratic maybes, including Carson.

David Wasserman, who analyzes House races for the Cook Political Report, said it’s hard to know how this race will shape up until it is certain that Carson will be able to finish her term.

‘To get a good political perspective, you’d be better off talking to a doctor than a political analyst,’ he said.

In general, he said, few people vote in a special election, which would be called by Gov. Mitch Daniels if Carson retires before the end of her term.

A low-turnout election would give an opportunity to Republicans in this strongly Democratic district, Wasserman said. He noted that a Republican came close to defeating a Democrat in a recent special election for a Massachusetts seat the Democrat should have won easily.

‘In a low-turnout election, Republicans have more of an opportunity to court their base,’ Wasserman said.

However, he’s not expecting Carson to resign her seat.

‘My sense is Julia Carson will not retire from Congress until she’s incapacitated,’ he said. ‘She has made it clear she has intended to stay in the past, even with ill health.’

Brian Vargus, a political science professor at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, said the district is heavily Democratic. In 2000, Democratic presidential nominee Al Gore carried it; so did John Kerry in 2004. And both, Vargus said, got even higher vote totals than Carson.

Vargus said the race could be intense, with many people interested in running — but most of the action will take place out of the public view.

He expects each party to try to coalesce around a candidate, avoiding a bruising public fight or primary election contest.

‘This is not going to be done out in the open,’ Vargus said. ‘Even if there’s a special election, most of the jockeying for position will be done behind closed doors.’

Hmmmm, sounds like this race will be interesting.

November 26, 2007

Lining Up For Carson’s Seat

This is why politics gets a bad rap.  As reported yesterday, Indianapolis U.S. Representative Julia Carson announced she is ill with cancer.  While she did not indicate what she would do in regard to her House seat, the Indianapolis Star has this story today.

“Although no one has wanted to offend Carson, 69, or the public by pushing openly, candidates are seeing the best chance since 1996, when Carson was first elected to Congress, for someone else to represent the 7th District. At least half a dozen potential candidates have been laying groundwork.

Her grandson, newly elected City-County Councilman Andre Carson, has won a key endorsement but has not said he would run. He did not return messages left at his home Sunday.”

Ya think, hey Indy Star here is a news flash, his grandmother just announced she has cancer!  He did the right thing by not talking to you. 

Continuing with the story: 

“Marion County Treasurer Michael Rodman has said he would run for the seat in 2008, and others thought to be interested include state Reps. Carolene Mays and Greg Porter, longtime political operative Robin Winston, and former state Health Commissioner Woody Myers.

Brian Vargus, a political science professor at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, said others who have been mentioned include City-County Council Vice President Joanne Sanders, state Rep. David Orentlicher and outgoing Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson.

Republicans, too, have been mobilizing. State Rep. Jon Elrod, R-Indianapolis, announced his intention Nov. 15 to challenge Carson.”

The Blogmeister understands you have to act fast sometimes in political situations.  The Blogmeister even understands other candidates organizing their campaigns in the event Rep. Carson were to resign.  However, it seems running a story like this 24 hours after Rep. Carson’s announcement was in, to say the least, bad taste on the part of the Indy Star.

November 25, 2007

Sad Note: US Rep. Carson Announces Cancer

This morning, US Rep. Julia Carson announced she has terminal lung cancer.  Long plagued with a variety of medical issues, she has taken some flak in Indianapolis for her attendance, or lack thereof, in the House.  This seems to explain what was going on.  Whatever side of the aisle your on, you never want to see this happen to anyone.   The full story is here.  For those outside of Indianapolis, here is a short bio from the story:

“…Carson is known as an advocate for the poor and those who can’t speak for themselves.

She was first elected to Congress in 1996. Previously, she served in the Indiana House of Representatives for two terms before being elected to the Indiana Senate, where she served until 1990. She then served as Center Township trustee, a post she held until she was elected to Congress in 1996.

A steadfast Democrat, Carson opposed President Bush’s request for authority to wage war in 2002 and, in 1999, won enactment of a measure awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to civil rights figure Rosa Parks.”

There was no word on what this may mean as far as her House position.

The blogmeister wishes Rep. Carson well in her treatment.

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