Sen. Earline Rogers (D-Gary) has been caught in the cross hairs of the party today by announcing her support for Long. The party's blogmistress hit Rogers quickly for daring to think for herself with the following:
Rogers was one of only two Democrats in the Indiana General Assembly who voted in favor of the Guv's Major Moves package, which included -- and was largely premised on -- the long-term lease of the Indiana Toll Road.
Thompson -- along with a majority of Hoosiers and yours truly -- has been very outspoken about her opposition to the Toll Road lease. She recently told WTHR in an interview that "there are estimates that the foreign consortium that is leasing the toll road for 75 years, which essentially amounts to a selling of the toll road, will have their investment recouped in fifteen years and that means for the following sixty it is pure profit. Who pays for that? We pay for that."
Rogers, without a doubt, is a great "get" as far as endorsements go, but does her support create something of a policy paradox for Thompson with respect to privatization? Your call.
Obviously, the party has still not gotten over the vote Rogers and Sen. Glenn Howard (D-Indianapolis) cast for Gov. Daniels' major moves initiative. It's apparently lost on them that Rogers and Howard made their decision at the urging of one of their own party's biggest lobbyists and fundraisers, Lacy Johnson. Reminding folks of Rogers' vote as she endorses Long, an opponent of the privatization deal, smacks me as implying Rogers isn't smart enough to think for herself. Laying that aside, isn't it offensive for the Democratic Party's spokeswoman to imply that Long, too, is making a mistake accepting Rogers' endorsement? Your call.