GOP mayoral candidate Greg Ballard’s latest campaign finance report is remarkable for what doesn’t show up in its relatively slim 38-pages: the names of many prominent Republicans.
Gov. Mitch Daniels, a Marion County resident, gave nothing to Ballard from personal or campaign funds. Murray Clark, the state Republican Party chairman and a Marion County resident, also gave nothing; neither did the state party. The name of state Rep. Mike Murphy, a former Marion County GOP chairman, also was absent.
“It makes you wonder,” said Bill Blomquist, political science professor at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. “Where are the Marion County Republicans?”
State GOP Chairman Murray Clark's response to Schneider when she asked why he hadn't contributed to Ballard provides all the more reason for demanding his resignation as party chairman. Clark's law firm, Baker & Daniels, has given tens of thousands to Peterson's campaign. Clark, asked why he hadn’t given Ballard any money, replied:
“I don’t know why. I don’t think he’s asked me for any, come to think about it.”
Clark, who said the state GOP has given nonfinancial help to Ballard’s campaign, said it’s difficult to raise money against an incumbent who seemed to be cruising to re-election earlier this year.
“The irony for (Ballard) now is he has a chance to win,” Clark said. “He’s doing better in debates and on the stump.”
Tom John's response to Schneider likewise doesn't cut it. "Marion County Republican Chairman Tom John noted that one reason Ballard has struggled was that so many people assumed Peterson would win," Schneider writes. “Conventional wisdom for a long time said this wouldn’t be a race because Peterson had $3.million,” he said. "He said the county party has done what it can to help." The party has done what is can to help? If this is as good as the party can do, then there is no hope for a two-party system in this county.
If you look at where Peterson's support is coming from among businesses and individuals, you will find it is largely comprised of businesses and people who do business with the city. It's a who's who of construction companies, developers, architects/engineers, road contractors, public finance/bond firms, city/county employees and attorneys. You can also match up many of the contributors to Peterson to list of firms receiving tax abatements, government subsidies and other special considerations from the Peterson administration in recent years. And who is Hoosier Trust Company? It has given more than $66,000 to Peterson. It is, to put it bluntly, government for sale. You can view Ballard's campaign finance report by clicking here.