Thursday, August 4, 2016

EXTRA: Hillary win a Hoosier miracle? Or a Democratic fantasy?

When it comes to the Great Lakes states, Illinois has become the Democratic stronghold, while the other states are the ones that can flip back and forth between the two major political parties based on the mood of the nation as a whole.
Will we unite Nov. 8? Or remain split by State Line Rd.

Then, there’s Indiana – the Hoosier state, our neighbor to the east. The one place in the Great Lakes region Republicans usually can count on to gain some support in the Electoral College presidential tally.

BARACK OBAMA WON the state when he first ran for president in 2008. But the last time before that a Democrat won the state was in 1964 – the year that Barry Goldwater showed us how “nuts” he was and lost to Lyndon B. Johnson.

It may be a key to the line of thinking amongst those Indiana residents who persist in calling themselves Democrats – mostly those people who live in or near Indianapolis and Gary.

Is Donald Trump more nuts than Goldwater to the point where Hillary Clinton’s Democratic presidential bid could actually take the state? Or is this just an absurd fantasy by people with too much free time on their hands to concoct screwy political theories?

It is a line being speculated upon by those Indiana residents who live close enough to the Illinois/Indiana border that they’re really part of the Chicago area – even though some of them like to pretend they’re not.

HILLARY COULD ACTUALLY win Indiana’s 11 Electoral College votes. That would be a disaster to the hopes of Donald Trump since there are certain places in the country he absolutely has to prevail if he’s to have any chance of winning the Nov. 8 election.

Part of it is that the Trump camp is too ridiculously absurd to be taken seriously.

While Democrats supposedly benefit from two other factors – that the state’s candidate for a U.S. Senate seat is the well-known former governor and senator Evan Bayh who has been out of politics since 2010 but decided to go for a comeback this year.
Could Chicago influence in Indiana help Hillary
There’s also the fact that Gov. Mike Pence gave up his position to be Trump’s vice presidential running mate. Meaning the new Republican gubernatorial nominee is Eric Holcomb, the lieutenant governor who himself has only been in that post for a couple of months when former Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann decided that being president of a community college in Indiana was more prestigious than being a ‘lite gov.”

THOSE FACTORS COULD combine with the “Trump is nuts” line of logic to scare some Hoosiers into thinking semi-friendly toward the Democratic ticket.

As one Gary councilwoman, LaVetta Sparks-Wade, said of Trump, “The man has no filter. He doesn’t seem to have any control over what he says. He doesn’t seem to be able to control what he does.”

That is a sentiment common to political observers of all persuasions these days.

Yet still, I have to admit to being skeptical that Indiana will go for Hillary and there will be a clean sweep of the Great Lakes states for the Democrats – and not just because Trump himself is putting efforts into taking Ohio paired up with Indiana.

HILLARY WON THE vote in Lake County, Ind., back in the May primary, but Bernie Sanders took the state among those who wanted to vote Democrat. While more Indiana residents chose Republican ballots, and used them to give Trump a majority vote in the GOP primary.

Could it just be the wishful thinking of people so isolated in Gary, Ind., that they don’t see the rest of the world? Or could it be the outrage that the Trump people don’t see because they can’t comprehend the whole world doesn’t share their Hillary rage?

For as the aforementioned Sparks-Wade said, “If the people wind up deciding that a Donald Trump presidency is any good, then we (in society) are in trouble.”

Ultimately, we’ll get to see if “Illiana” truly comes together on Election Day for the Democrats. Or was it the same type of wishful thinking that made some people nearly three decades ago think that Michael Dukakis was cut of presidential timber?


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