- Governor Mitch Daniels--He proved that a governor can tackle tough issues and help move the state in a positive direction without losing public support. His re-election margin wasn't as big as Evan Bayh's, but he has something to show for his efforts.
- Obama Indiana campaign--Indiana witnessed an unprecedented grassroots presidential campaign put on by the Obama campaign. It paid off big on election day.
- U.S. Rep. Mark Souder--He pulls off an impressive re-election win over a well-financed opponent who many pundits expected would prevail in a bad year for Republicans nationally.
- Republican Attorney General candidate Greg Zoeller. He first convincingly beat an establishment-backed candidate at the state GOP convention and then eked out a victory over a better-financed Democratic candidate.
- Marion County Democrats--The party swept all of the county-wide races by convincing margins and expanded their influence at the township level.
- Andre Carson--He breaks through the 60% barrier his grandmother could never achieve. Until redistricting, Republicans won't waste a dime trying to beat him.
- Indiana Democratic Party--The party never got its act together after its chosen candidate for governor lost to Jill Long Thompson and wound up losing all three statewide races. Fingers will be pointed at Thompson's campaign, but the real blame lies with the state party.
- Indiana McCain campaign--Luke Messer made no attempt to build a statewide campaign organization to compete against the Obama juggernaut. Pro-McCain bloggers in Indiana felt that they were working alone in this state to boost the McCain-Palin ticket. It wouldn't have taken much to improve McCain's margins in the suburban counties and southern Indiana to have kept Indiana in the red state column. Messer didn't even try.
- Linda Pence--It's not enough to think you're the smartest attorney in the room. People have got to like you a little if you want them to vote for you.
- Marion County Republican Party--Local Republicans lost every countywide race and all three closely-contested House races. Rep. Bob Behning barely won in the supposedly Republican stronghold in the southern part of the county. Sen. Teresa Lubbers limped to victory against an under-funded Democratic opponent who couldn't even campaign for office because he was so ill.
- Jon Elrod--He abandoned his congressional race shortly after winning the May primary to run for re-election to his state representative seat and made the same mistake he made in his losing special election race against Andre Carson. Mary Ann Sullivan pummeled him with false attacks on his record, and he never responded publicly to the false attacks. Here's a hint to my good friend Jon Elrod. A lie becomes the truth when it's repeated often enough.