The Real Race For U.S. Senate In Indiana (Updated)

Word has it that Tamyra D’Ippolito will, in fact, get the signatures she needs to qualify for the Democrat side of the U.S. Senate race in Indiana, meaning the race will in all likelihood be on the GOP side.

Ironically, the party primary race which will result between Marlin Stutzman and Dan Coats means a real choice for the people of Indiana – a choice, in fact, that Americans should have in every election. Essentially, Indianans will get to choose between Indiana and D.C.

We could launch into a long dissertation about the two candidates, but rather than doing that we’ll just show you the difference.

First, here’s what you need to know about Coats…

Dan Coats: A Tale of Leadership, Courage, and Achievement from Lawyers Guns Money on Vimeo.

And now, here’s what you need to know about Stutzman…

Stutzman doesn’t have any money (he’s only raised about $120,000 so far and spent it as fast as it’s come in), which is a real problem. But he pulled an endorsement from Redstate.com’s Erick Erickson yesterday, and we saw in the NY-23 race last fall that having the activist conservative movement behind a candidate can bring them from nowhere to somewhere in a hurry.

Whether Stutzman’s campaign can catch on is a real question; he has to engage Indiana’s Republican voters first and gain some traction, and it was a real uphill battle for him to do that when the ultimate opponent was Evan Bayh and his $13 million war chest. With Bayh out of the way and electability no longer a major issue with Stutzman, that state’s GOP electorate now has a choice – does it want to send one of its own to Washington, or will it choose instead to bring in a ringer from D.C.?

UPDATE: TheHayride.com is reliably informed that Stutzman’s candidacy now has the eye of the Club For Growth. A Club source tells us “that race is firmly on our radar” now that Bayh is out. The Club For Growth was another piece in the Doug Hoffman puzzle last year, and they have been a major asset for Mario Rubio’s rise. Stay tuned.

UPDATE NO. 2 Jim DeMint’s Senate Conservatives Fund has now picked up the race, is conducting an online poll among Coats, Stutzman, former congressman John Hostettler and Don Bates, Jr. to get an indication of its supporters’ preferences before getting involved in the race. Early returns have Stutzman pulling 81 percent of the vote.

UPDATE NO. 3 It appears Miz D’Ippolito was running her mouth a bit, as she apparently fell short of the necessary 500 signatures on her ballot petition in both the 7th and 8th congressional districts. D’Ippolito told National Review that Congressman Baron Hill is the likely Democrat nominee, as he had a private fundraiser with Rahm Emanuel last week and she thinks the Bayh retirement was staged to freeze out Hill’s competition.

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