Evan Bayh, senator from Indiana, today announced that he is not going to run for re-election. Although Bayh is a Democrat, he has always been on the conservative side of the tent. The most recent example of this was the Massachusetts special senate election. The moment it was clear the Republican won the race, Bayh was making statements supporting the idea that health care reform was dead.
To the end (not that this necessarily constitutes the end), Bayh has been less than helpful to the Democratic Party. He drops out of the race with a couple of days left to file to run in the primary. This isn’t enough time for someone to jump in and gather the necessary signatures to get on the primary ballot, so the candidate for the fall would be picked by the Democratic Party.
Except there was one person already out gathering signatures to run in the primary against Bayh. Tamyra d’Ippolito, a cafe owner in Bloomington, claims to be 1000 signatures away from the number needed to get on the ballot.
I’m not confident she will make it, but it might have been better if Bayh had waited a day or two. It is likely that Bayh’s absence really energized d’Ippolito.
If Tamyra d’Ippolito gets the signatures she will be the only senate candidate on the primary ballot. So she will be the Democratic candidate in the fall. Judging by her web page, she has no political experience and she has an uphill battle to win.
I think the Democrat’s chances for winning in the fall would be much higher if the party could pick the candidate.
With luck d’Ippolito fails to get the signatures and it will make no difference. In any event, thank-you Evan Bayh.
Hat tip to TPM.