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Ballard cruises to victory in bid for second term

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Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard easily won a second term Tuesday, pulling off a solid victory against Democratic challenger Melina Kennedy.

As of 10:10 p.m., with 99.5 percent of the 593 precincts reporting, Ballard led Kennedy with 51.3 percent of the more than 178,700 votes tallied so far in Marion County. He had 91,660 votes compared with Kennedy’s 84,269, or 47.1 percent.

Kennedy conceded the election about 9 p.m.

Ballard landed a sizable number of split-ticket votes to claim victory as Democrats reclaimed control of the City-County Council, capturing 16 of the 29 seats. About 55 percent of the straight-party votes in Marion County were cast for Democrats.

His victory gives the career Marine and relative political newcomer another four years to focus on issues such as infrastructure repair, reforms in the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and economic development initiatives. Those were among the areas he tackled during his first term through moves such as the sale of the city’s water and sewer utilities and projects such as the $155 million City Way development north of Eli Lilly’s campus.

"People appreciate the work the mayor had done the last four years," said Marion County GOP Chairman Kyle Walker on Tuesday night. "They want to see a continuation of the progress Mayor Ballard has brought to Indianapolis."

In his next term, Ballard has talked about pursuing economic-development initiatives such as expanding airline service at Indianapolis International Airport; continuing infrastructure improvements such as repairing roads and building new sidewalks; and maintaining the city’s fiscal stability and AAA bond rating.

Political experts said voter turnout would play a big role in election results, with heavier turnout likely favoring Kennedy. Nearly 30 percent of registered voters turned out Tuesday, more than the 27 percent who showed up in 2007 to the last mayoral election.

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  • Two mediocre choices.
    Have to agree with an earlier post...not sure how this qualifies and an "easy victory" with just 51%. Wasn't a runaway victory by any means. I voted for Kennedy despite the fact that I didn't think she was an extremely strong candidate. Better than Ballard in my opinion but not a perfect candidate by any means. This election reminded me of the 2004 presidential one. I didn't care for Kerry but disliked Bush even more.
  • Negative Ads
    I think what really did her in were the negative ADs. She came off very volatile and pushy.
  • Mayor
    It is crazy how these elections are like sporting events. This seemed to be a very close race. To get this much of the vote Kennedy got her points across and gained significant support. Agree that "cruising to victory" is a misleading headline. Ballard should think about that almost half of the voters supported Kennedy's agenda and that he should strive to get some things done and not necessary "stay the course" and coast for 4 years.
  • FOP Endorsement
    The FOP endorsed Kennedy for the sole reason that Mayor Ballard had the guts to bring in a no nonsense guy to reform the department. The IMPD is the biggest bunch of rogues in the state.

    Thank God someone has the nerve to stick up to that bunch of thugs.
  • 51% = Easily?
    51% seems like an extremely close race, how do you write an article that says "easily won". Guess that is why you are a journalist and not in a career that requires math.
  • kiss of death
    Melina couldn't have found three less respected organizations to endorse her! Her constant complaining didn't help her either.
  • True Doug
    I second the comment about our police and teachers; not any one in particular. I'm sure there are good teachers and officers, but as an organization they are below par.
  • Well then....
    Move back to Omaha.

    As someone famous once said "Omaha isn't the end of the world, but you can see it from there". Omaha is a hick town on the edge of nowhere. Please...it makes
    Indy look like NYC
  • people Of Indianapolis
    Suckers, I have traveled all over the midwest and lived in Omaha for 18 years. You all must not of ever lived anywhere else to re-elect Ballard. Your taxes are high, even if they have been lowered and the services you get are inadequate. Your police dept is a joke and the cities ability to deliver on adequate services are deplorable. I know that my house in Omaha was taxed far less than a comparable house in indy. How do I know? because my office used to located in Indy and I had many conversations with people who live in the broadripple area which is comparable to where I lived. I use to live 5 blocks from Warren Buffets place. You are all getting ripped off!
    • That's too bad
      If only Melina had been a man.
    • I told you Greg I could get you over the goal line
      See you in your suite at the Super Bowl!
    • surprise
      Kennedy was endorsed by the Indianapolis Star, Fraternal Order of Police, and the Indiana Teachers Union - with endorsements like that, how could she have possibly won!!

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