Democrats see opportunities in non-Indy convention

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Indiana Democrats will host their annual state convention outside Indianapolis for the first time as the party tries to energize voters in an area dominated by Republicans.

About 2,000 Democratic Party delegates will descend on Fort Wayne's Grand Wayne Convention Center this weekend as the party gathers to nominate its slate of candidates, adopt an official platform and select Indiana's delegates to the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.

Democratic Mayor Tom Henry told The News-Sentinel that landing the convention was a coup that could bring about $500,000 in tourism revenue to the city. He hopes it also will rally discouraged Democrats who face an uphill battle almost every election cycle.

"I think it showed that Democrats in Fort Wayne and Allen County still have a considerable amount of strength," he said of the opportunity to host the convention. "The Democrats in our city and county are saying, 'Yes, we have a voice, at least in our own party.'"

Republicans have long had a firm grip on Allen County, where they hold majorities on city and town councils in Fort Wayne, New Haven and Woodburn.

Moving the convention away from Indianapolis gives Democrats an opportunity to gain footholds in less Democrat-friendly areas, said state party Chairman Dan Parker.

"It would let Democrats showcase their ideas in different parts of the state," Parker said. "We can compete and win the city of Fort Wayne, but we want to compete and win throughout northeast Indiana."

Henry said many Allen County voters don't view party affiliation as a factor when choosing which candidates to support, but he warned Democrats and independents not to stay home this year just because they think another round of GOP victories is inevitable.

"If you don't vote, you get what you get," he said.

Steven Shine, chairman of the Allen County Republican Party, rejected the notion that the convention could help Democrats loosen the GOP's grip on Allen County.

"No matter what kind of stunting the Democrats try to pull, Allen County will remain loyal to the Republican Party," he said.

Regardless of how voters respond, the convention in Fort Wayne is likely to drum up interest from other cities hoping to reap the economic benefits of hosting it, Parker said.

"I told the mayor, 'No pressure, but every other city that wants to host the convention is counting on you,'" he said.

Even Shine acknowledged a bit of political envy.

"Quite frankly, in my career I have not (ever) been jealous of Democrats, but this time I am," Shine said. "I want to be first in line to get the Republican state convention here in Allen County if and when that should occur."


Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. I keep wondering why I keep hearing about this problem of corporations leaving America, and I never hear a reasonable proposal to lower corporate tax rates and raise personal rates on income from capital gains and dividends, especially for high earners. It is just too simple of a solution for Congress to embrace?

  2. Are you financially down and you need money to settle your dept,or you need money to start up a business or to invest on a huge business,we also offer Loans to individuals, Firms and cooperate bodies at low interest rate , loan terms determinant,Loan amount between the sum of $5,000.00 to $100,000,000.00. US Dollars And Euro. Loan for developing businesses a competitive edge/ business expansion. We Offer The Following Kinds Of Loans. Personal Loans (Secure and Unsecured) Business Loans (Secure and Unsecured) Consolidation Loan FIRST INFORMATIONS NEEDED ARE: BORROWER’S DATA’S INFORMATION,FILL AND RETURN FOR QUICK START UP PROCESS. Name:_________ Last Name:_________ Age:_________ Contact Address:_________ Country:_________ Amount Needed as Loan:_________ Loan Duration:_________ Phone Number__________ Monthly Income/Yearly Income:_________ Purpose for Loan:_________ Occupation:_________ How Soon is Loan Needed__________ Email via: albertbrownfirm@outlook.com

  3. is a disaster. SR37 already needs to be built to interstate standards between 465 and SR144. Southport Road is a mess each morning and evening.

  4. Bass Pro Shops would be good for the mall as well as a Giant Eagle Market District or a Jungle Jim's International Market Place grocery store like the one near Cincinnati Ohio.A Disney quest indoor theme park would be good.An Academy outdoor store would be good too.Indoor Circus shows and magic shows would be good as well. A casino with sports bar would be good.A Disney theater inside that shows movies and Broadway shows would work.Nashville Tennessee concert shops with indoor neon lights would be good.How about a theater that shows travel shows and theme parks. A train store would be good.How about a giant toy store with high tech video games.

  5. This development is in addition to Allpoints Midwest 5, Aitrtek, a recent FedEx and more in Plainfield. Greenwood and Brownsburg also have similar projects.