Former Indiana state Rep. Jackie Walorski (R), who fell just short of defeating Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) in November, said she’ll make a decision about whether to run again in the next couple of weeks. She said neither redistricting nor Donnelly’s decision to run would affect her decision.
“I’m still committed to the district,” she told Roll Call on Friday. “If I was worried about Joe Donnelly or numbers, I never would’ve gotten in in 2010.”
Walorski blamed her 2010 loss on Democrats’ last-minute efforts to boost Libertarian Mark Vogel. Donnelly finished with 48 percent of the vote, Walorski got 47 percent and Vogel got 5 percent.
Hoosiers expect the Republican-controlled state Legislature will draw a more Republican-leaning district for Donnelly, and he has hinted that he may run for governor or Senate instead of running for re-election. For the time being, though, his camp seemed underwhelmed by the potential for a rematch with Walorski.
“Joe loves serving the people of north central Indiana. He wants to continue to serve Hoosiers. And despite sometimes being underestimated, he has shown time and again that he can win tough races against difficult odds,” a senior adviser to Donnelly told Roll Call in an e-mail. ”Jackie Walorski never stopped running for Congress. From her non-concession speech on Nov. 2 to her weekly talk radio appearances, it is obvious that running for Congress is her job. Whatever she may or may not announce in the near future will have absolutely no impact on Joe’s plans. In fact, if she could still get through a Republican primary, she would be one of the more beatable candidates her party could field.”
Walorski said this is the only race she’s considering, despite rumors that she might look at the races for Senate and secretary of state. She said she has been on a “listening tour” since the election, talking to volunteers, county coordinators and elected officials around the district.
As of the end of 2010, Walorski still had $15,000 in a federal account. Donnelly had $20,000 on hand but also had $42,000 in debt.
Terri Henderson, 6, center, whose mother is El Salvador, attends a rally with members of Congress at Union Station's Columbus Circle to announce the Restore Opportunity, Strengthen, and Improve the Economy (ROSIE) Act on July 29, 2014. The legislation provides incentives for government contractors to pay a living wage and other benefits that would help low-income workers.