INDIANAPOLIS — Following a topsy turvy election cycle up and down the ballot, Indiana Republicans managed sweep victories in all statewide elected offices.
Republican Gov.-Elect, Eric Holcomb defeated Democrat John Gregg Tuesday evening carrying 51 percent of the vote with 96 percent of precincts reporting. Holcomb’s victory follows Gov. Mike Pence’s move to join the Donald Trump ticket — leaving Holcomb roughly 100 days to sell his campaign.
“When we kicked this thing off you heard what I heard. You heard Holcomb can’t raise enough money, Holcomb can’t put together a credible state wide campaign in this short amount of time, Holcomb can’t do that and they were partly right, Holcomb can’t do it but we did,” Holcomb said.
Tuesday night’s results also mark the second loss at the governor’s office for Gregg. The former candidate recalled in his conceding speech the past year in politics had been a “wacky ride” and continued to give his party counterparts an uplifting message for the days ahead.
“It’s important that while many of you are saying how can we ever win. Democrats, we can win. We will win,” Gregg said. “This view is a beginning not of an end. View this as a time for us to re-energize our party and embrace our state and go forward together.”
Another heated race in Indiana ended with a win for Republican Todd Young carrying 52 percent of the vote with 98 percent of precincts reporting. Young credited his win to Hoosiers wanting a different voice in Washington.
“This Marine is humble. I’m proud to have earned your trust, your confidence and your support,” Young said during his acceptance speech.
This race also comes as negative attack ads flooded Indiana airways from both Young and former Democratic Sen. and Gov. Evan Bayh. The two candidates had been running against each other since mid-July following the Baron Hill’s drop from the race.
“While we may have our disappointments this evening, which are perfectly understandable, tomorrow will bring a new day and a new dawn, bringing with it the potential of new horizons bringing hope and opportunities for all,” Bayh said.
Superintendent of Public Instruction
Republican Jennifer McCormick defeated incumbent Democrat Glenda Ritz in the state superintendent of public instruction race with 54 percent of the vote with 98 percent of precincts reporting. In her acceptance speech to supporters, McCormick said she aims to end “putting political agendas before kids.” McCormick also offered a thankful message to Ritz for her service.
“I spoke to Glenda Ritz on the phone and offered her my congratulations and I want to tell you I do appreciate the four years she’s spent in the Statehouse,” McCormick said. “Nothing is easy about politics and nothing is easy about running a campaign and certainly serving in that world.”
Ritz congratulated McCormick in her concession speech and followed up by saying work still needs to be done. She urged McCormick and her future staff to work past the days of ISTEP and put “the days of teaching to the test” behind Hoosiers. She also called on Hoosier teachers and families to be a part of the conversation in the days to come.
“Hoosier educators and families, this is a call to you,” Ritz said. “You must be part of the conversation to be strong applicants for our children and public education. Be a loud voice at the Statehouse.”
Republican Cutis Hill also swept the Attorney General’s seat carrying 62 percent of the vote against Democrat Lorenzo Arredondo with 98 percent of precincts reporting.
Hill, the Elkhart County Prosecuting Attorney, will replace Republican Attorney General Greg Zoeller.
Andi TenBarge is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news site powered by Franklin College journalism students. Taylor Brown, Annie Gentry, Abrahm Hurt, Shelby Mullis, Adrianna Pitrelli, Sarah Ramon and Derreck Stahly contributed to this report.