Indiana’s 9 US House races: Politics prof predicts winners, losers

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — We’re just weeks away from the Nov. 6 election. While much of the nation focuses on Indiana’s U.S. Senate race, Indiana has a state full of U.S. House races going on, too.

Greg Shufeldt is an assistant professor of political science at Butler University. He’s got his finger on the pulse of Indiana’s nine U.S. House races.

Shufeldt said, “Right now, if I had to place money or place a wager, I would probably assume the sitting party will keep each of those races. The Republicans are poised to still have seven seats, and Democrats are likely to hold onto their two.” 

In his analysis, Shufeldt said he thinks the Democratic incumbents, Rep. Andre Carson and Rep. Peter Visclosky, will comfortably keep their seats. Carson is facing off against Republican Wayne Harmon. Visclosky will face Republican Mark Leyva and independent Jonathan Kleinman. 

Shufeldt also said he believes Republican Rep. Jackie Walorski is likely to get re-elected. Walorski will face off against Democrat Mel Hall and independent Richard Wolf.

What about incumbents? District 3’s Republican Jim Banks, Republican Susan Brooks of District 5 or District 8’s Republican Larry Bucshon? Pretty likely safe in terms of re-election, Schufeldt said.

Banks will face off against Democrat. Courtney Tritch. Brooks is running against Democrat Dee Thornton. Buschon will face off against Democrat William Tanoos.

Shufeldt said, “In Indiana, most congressional districts voted for Donald Trump. They are Republican districts. It’s intuitive and perhaps not exciting for viewers, but it seems very likely that they will stay in Republican hands.” 

Could there be an upset? It’s possible in District 9, Shufeldt said. Republican incumbent Rep. Trey Hollingsworth is squaring off with Democrat candidate Liz Watson.

Shufeldt said, “Trey Hollingsworth is about to complete his first term. When we think about when members of the House are most vulnerable, it’s that first time they run for re-election. They don’t necessarily have as high name recognition.”

Who might replace outgoing Reps. Todd Rokita and Luke Messer in Districts 4 and 6 respectively There is a lot of competition on those districts.

For Rokita’s seat, Democrat Tobi Beck and Republican State Rep. Jim Baird are battling it out.

For Messer’s seat, the candidates are Republican Greg Pence, the brother of Vice President Mike Pence, Democrat Jeannine Lee Lake, Libertarian Tom Ferkinhoff, and independents Heather Meloy and John Miller.

Shufeldt said, “I would assume, if I had to guess right now, that Rep. Baird and Greg Pence will likely be the winners of those two races.”

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