Ballard vs. Kennedy: Finance Reports and YouTube Fun

Jon Murray has the overview of the finance reports that were filed today.  Mayor Ballard raised $715,236 which brought his cash on hand to $2,039,201.  Kennedy raised $510,216 which brought her cash on hand to $1,272,335.  This leaves Ballard with a significant financial advantage of over $760,000. 

Much to Paul Ogden’s dismay, Kennedy outspent Ballard this time around and he won’t get to write a post on the burn rates of the Ballard campaign.  Kennedy spent nearly $180,000 to Ballard’s $150,000.  We’ve heard Team Ballard has a new fundraiser that is spending less and raising more which this report would seem to support.  

We’ve maintained that Kennedy is going to have to spend some money on this Democrat primary to make sure she gets to the General Election. The fact that she has two African-American males running against her shows some unrest in a key constituency.  Add in the fact that both of them are ahead of her on the ballot and one of them is a Carson, she really cannot afford to take the Primary race for granted.  How much she spends is a big question.  We’ve taken a quick look at her report and it appears she has waited to do any media purchases until after the reporting deadline which is what we would expect. 

In other mayor’s race fun, the Marion County Republican Party sent out a YouTube video hitting back at Kennedy’s attempts to discredit Mayor Ballard’s job commitment numbers.  You may remember we noted earlier this week that Kennedy was forced to pull her web ad down after breaking federal copyright law.  The GOP response is below.   Happy Friday!

We knew this would happen, but we didn’t know it would happen this early. 

Democrat Candidate for Mayor, Melina Kennedy, started running false, negative, misleading attack ads against Mayor Ballard…on April 2nd!  Kennedy has demonstrated that she’ll do anything to win and that’s why it is so important that we show our support for Mayor Ballard by telling the FACTS.

Click here to see a video that shares the facts about Mayor Ballard’s impressive record of creating jobs.  Please forward this email to your friends, and post this video on your Facebook page.  With your help, we can make sure that we keep moving Indianapolis forward with Mayor Ballard!


Kennedy Attacks Ballard on Job Commitments; MCRCC Hits Back

Yesterday, Melina Kennedy decided it was a good idea to go after Mayor Greg Ballard on his job commitment numbers in an email and a press release.  We cannot say we are surprised. 

While we agree with Gary Welsh at Advance Indiana that Kennedy has completely struck out on her first two attacks on Mayor Ballard, we think she simply has got to find a way to discredit his jobs numbers. 

Think about it.  You are Melina Kennedy.  You were Deputy Mayor in charge of economic development and you tout it as a major part of why you are best equipped to be Mayor.  But, you have a problem with some numbers.  Ballard created more jobs in 2010 than you were able to in 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 COMBINED. You’ve got to make those numbers irrelevant or at least muddy the waters. 

Unfortunately for Kennedy, it doesn’t look like the Ballard crew plans on letting that happen anytime soon. 

Marion County Republican Chairman Kyle Walker hit back in the below email and, we have to say, it made us wonder if the Kennedy campaign needs someone to donate a subscription to the Indianapolis Business Journal.


Melina Kennedy’s campaign just sunk to a new low. Kennedy sent an email today that included lies about Mayor Ballard’s record on job creation. Additionally, Kennedy’s email demonstrates that she is either misrepresenting the Ballard administration’s record or Kennedy doesn’t understand the city’s economic development work (which she touts she did for several years).

We all know why Melina Kennedy is launching false attacks…because Mayor Ballard’s administration has produced a record number of job commitments for the city. In 2010, Indianapolis received commitments for 8,702 new jobs and $934 million in capital investment – both are record highs. And it is more job commitments than Melina Kennedy’s economic development efforts yielded in 2003, 2004 and 2005 combined!

As the Indianapolis Business Journal noted, “The city’s current procedures for reporting job commitments and tracking them are essentially the same as they were during Democratic Mayor Bart Peterson’s administration, according to two Peterson-era economic development officials.”

Melina Kennedy has previously promoted her “record” of economic development, compiled the same way by both administrations, but now she doesn’t want to compare numbers.

Melina Kennedy’s email claims “only about 20 percent of Ballard’s “new jobs” are solid commitments.” That is simply not true!  According to the Indianapolis Business Journal, “City records of tax-abated jobs show, in 2009, about 82 percent of the job commitments expected in that year came to fruition. That figure was 84 percent in 2008, and 64 percent in 2007.  The state’s numbers show an average of 87 percent of jobs came to fruition from 2005 to 2009.”

Melina Kennedy also tries to claim that the Ballard administration isn’t making information public. As the Indianapolis Business Journal article indicates,

“Companies that get local tax abatements-temporary relief from the taxes paid on new development-must file annual paperwork with the city to report their progress in bringing promised jobs or risk losing their city money. Those receiving other public incentives also are tracked by the city to ensure compliance. Those reports are public.”

Here are some more facts reported by the Indianapolis Business Journal:

“Of the 8,702 jobs committed, 4,403 were associated with companies receiving local public incentives, such as tax abatements or infrastructure upgrades. Other companies are offered local incentives but accept only state tax credits; they account for 2,600 of the jobs.

Still others get no public dollars but accept Develop Indy’s help in recruiting employees or selecting a site. Those companies committed to 764 jobs on the city’s list.

A handful of other companies on the list-representing 935 of the job commitments-remain confidential because they have not yet publicly disclosed their move or expansion plans.”

Since competing apples to apples with Mayor Ballard’s job creation record doesn’t bode well for Melina Kennedy, she’s trying to change the rules of the game. Don’t let her! Arm your friends with the facts by forwarding this email today.


Kyle Walker
Marion County Republican Party

Updates, Surveys and Quarters

We got an email this morning from a Republican precinct committeeman with a letter from Marion County Republican Chairman Kyle Walker. The letter announced a few things.

  • Marion County Republicans will gather for slating on Saturday, February 12th
  • The County Party coffers were depleted from the 2010 election but they made a big fundraising push and began 2011 with nearly $30,000 cash on hand.
  • A volunteer is upgrading the website for precinct committeemen to utilize for several functions and plan to have it up and running by March 1st
  • The County will go back to the township organization and will have final selections  by February 1st

Walker also sent out a sixteen question member survey to “be used by the Central Committee to make informed decisions for the future of our Party.”  We thought it was ironic we got a copy of this letter and survey just a day after we read a post by Paul Ogden trashing Walker. Ogden’s post said the only way to build the Republican Party up is “by strengthening the power of the grass roots”.  Paul, we know you have an ax to grind with David Brooks but just because someone you do not care for is in a leadership position does not mean grassroots activists are not being empowered.  

We should not expect anything else from Paul at this point though.  He trashed us yesterday as an “insider Marion County GOP blog” and compared us to, among other things, the “GOP country-club establishment.”  We can tell you none of us have ever been members of a country club and we would bet some “insider” Republicans hate our blog. 

Paul, our blog does not have a survey so we are not worried about what you think of us.  The Republican Party DOES have one but they have not asked your opinion since you are not working with their organization.  Travis Tritt has a song for you.

Marion County Chairman Caucus Update

The Marion County Republican Party will hold a caucus to fill their County Chairman position.  Over the weekend, Gary Conner threw his hat in the ring.  He is a current city councilor in Lawrence.  As we’ve mentioned and virtually everyone that has any interest knows that Kyle Walker is running as well. 

There have been two interesting tidbits that have come up today and we assume there will be a few more happenings before the caucus actually begins. 

First, Matt Tully tweeted:

We hope it is not true that someone who is running for Marion County Republican Party Chair plans to trash the Republican Mayor and leader of the Marion County Republican Party in his speech to precinct committeemen.  We can guarantee that he will lose if that is his main strategy.  We understand Gary is upset that Mayor Ballard plans to support Kyle Walker.  What we do not understand is being so selfish that you would do something that hurts the Party that you are asking to lead.  It is pathetic.

Second, Gary Welsh over at Advance Indiana is saying that appointed precinct committeemen are being threatened that they will be removed if they do not support Walker.  First, we haven’t heard anything like that.  Second, we doubt anyone is threatened enough by the Gary Conner for Chairman Campaign that they felt the need to threaten anyone.

Walker Sends Message to Precinct Committeemen

Sorry we have been a little neglectful of our blogging duties today.  We promise we won’t let it happen often.

This evening, a reader sent us an email that Kyle Walker sent out to precinct committeemen regarding the race for Marion County Republican Chairman.  So far, Walker is the only candidate. 


December 9, 2010


First and foremost, thank you for serving as a valued member of the Marion County Republican Party.  You are the heart and soul of our organization.  As I’ve served alongside you for 13 years, currently as an elected precinct committeeman, we’ve experienced a lot of victories, changes, and challenges.  I know your job isn’t easy and I fully appreciate your dedication to our party.

Tuesday evening, we will meet as a party to elect a Chairman to fill the vacancy left by the departure of Chairman Tom John.  The selection of our next Chairman is integral to the process of our party democracy, and is a right and responsibility that must be exercised with great care.  Our next Chairman must lead our party into 2011 with optimism and determination to seize the great opportunities we have to continue Republican leadership in Indianapolis, Lawrence, Beech Grove, Speedway and beyond. 

As we prepare for the next chapter in our party, I respectfully submit my candidacy to serve as your next County Chairman.  I care deeply about our party and I believe my experiences over the years give me a unique perspective to be able to strengthen our organization from the ground up and to overcome the challenges we face.

Before and after deciding to seek the chairmanship of our party, I have sought the opinions and counsel of many folks in our organization.  I’ve spoken with countless committeemen, ward chairs, volunteers, elected officials, fundraisers, and party stalwarts.  While I learned a lot from these discussions, the following three points serve as the foundation for beginning our party’s next chapter:

First, we must empower each and every member of our organization and build a grassroots system that results in identifying and delivering more Republican votes on Election Day.  We can do this by giving volunteers the tools they need to succeed, which include greater access to information, enhanced training, clear goals, progress-tracking, and excellent communication with leadership.  We should utilize technology to make improvements in the way we interact and manage information – from filing Election Day board forms to obtaining walk lists.

Second, the next chairman must dedicate a significant amount of time to the duties of the role.  I am willing to put the growth of my own small business on hold, and give nearly all of my professional time to the party.  This will result in a focus and presence that is critical to the growth of our party.  I will place a priority on fundraising to make sure we have the resources necessary to build a more effective ground game.  And I’ll work tirelessly to better engage people in our quest to strengthen every aspect of the party operation.

Third, we must return to a Township structure.  While the Area system has some advantages, it also has unintended consequences.   A movement back to townships will result in more people involved in leadership, a greater sense of identity within the township organizations and clubs, and a stronger connection between the precinct committeemen and the central committee.

While I believe these three immediate steps will bring positive change, there is much more to do.  If elected your next Chairman, I will seek your ideas, opinions, and suggestions.  You do the hardest work for our party, and your ideas will be critically important for our continued success.

I respectfully ask for your vote to be our next Marion County Republican Central Committee Chairman.  As you consider improving the future of our party, please don’t hesitate to call or email me with your questions and ideas.


Kyle Walker

Precinct Committeeman, Lawrence 23

(317) 514-1276

P.S.  The reorganization caucus will be held on Tuesday, December 14th at the Marriott East, located at 7202 E. 21st Street, Indianapolis, IN 46219.  Credentialing begins at 7:00 p.m., and the caucus will begin promptly at 7:30 p.m.  Each Precinct Committeeman and Vice Precinct Committeemen is entitled to vote at this caucus.        

Tony Samuel Decides Against Running for Marion County Republican Chairman

This afternoon, Tony Samuel sent out an email saying he will not be running for Marion County Republican Party Chairman.  Samuel indicated there were other good people in place with the right people involved to raise the funds necessary for success. 

Samuel also said,

I will be 100% supportive of the new County Chairman and encourage everyone to give this person a fair chance to chart their course to improve the organization.  In turn, I am hopeful that I can assist in shedding light on needed improvements and I trust that there will be an open process for all to participate.  Most importantly, I encourage all of us to come together and work as a team.

At this point, Kyle Walker remains the only declared candidate.

Tom John Officially Steps Down as Marion County Republican Chair

Today in an email sent out from the Marion County Party, Tom John officially resigned his position noting the significant time commitment required to be County Chair and the desire to spend more time focused on family and work.  He also noted that he believes no one should stay in the position for too long insisting his resignation had nothing to do with the losses this November.

Tom cited some of the successes of the past years including taking the mayor’s seat and the council in 2007 as well as reclaiming House District 89 and the Wayne township trustee’s office in 2010.

Abdul says a new chair has to be elected within 30 days with 10 days notice to precinct committeemen of the caucus so that means the vote will take place prior to New Years Eve.

Tom John told Jon Murray of the Indy Star that he will not endorse a candidate.  He did, however, give his analysis of what the job requires in his email to the organization:

First, as all previous chairmen and I know, this office is a heavy burden to carry when also working another job to earn a living.  This is even truer in a municipal cycle.  Thus, I suggest that our next Chairman be able to commit all or nearly all of their time to being chairman.  Secondly, another important aspect of being chairman is that the chairman should know and understand our entire organization, whether that is from experience as a member of the organization or candidate or such other experience.  Third, it is important to look for someone familiar with all aspects of the office’s responsibilities, including running campaigns, raising money, and the very important nuts and bolts of ensuring we have poll workers and completely filled PC and Ward Chair positions.  Finally, and in my mind most importantly, this person must have demonstrated a history of love of and dedication to our city and our party.  Ultimately, that grit and passion will help them through the tough times and help us win elections in the face of significant challenges.

Kyle Walker still remains the main name floating around and it has been said he would seek a paid chairmanship.  We’re sure there are others who would as well.  We will post our job description for Marion County Chairman later this afternoon.