Welcome to the archives for NewsTalk, an IBJ blog published from November 2007 through December 2010.

Angry at Indiana politicians

March 5, 2010

The public isn’t seething with anger just at Congress. They’re upset with state legislators, too, according to a recent Politico story. The online article discusses polls taken in states ranging from Pennsylvania to Iowa that reveal deep dissatisfaction.

The story doesn’t mention Indiana, but Tom Hirons, who owns the Indianapolis-based advertising and public relations firm Hirons & Co., says the same sentiment is present here. Hirons won’t say where he gleaned his information because it came through work for a client.

But, he says, it’s obvious voters are really honked at incumbents in both parties. In fact, the only incumbent with any sort of positive approval rating is Gov. Mitch Daniels, who is enjoying “extraordinary” popularity.

“Dissatisfaction is not specific to individuals or to parties, but to incumbency,” Hirons says.

Negative sentiment is so high that it compares to the groundswell that swept Republicans into Congress in 1994 under Newt Gingrich’s Contract with America, Hirons says. He adds that he isn’t certain what’s beneath the anger, though he suspects the sluggish economy and job losses are factors.

By way of background, Hirons votes in Democratic primaries and is tied to the party. However, his company doesn’t work for political parties, and he has employees who are active in Democratic as well as Republican circles.

What are your thoughts? If you’re angry, why? And what do you think of the General Assembly and the governor?


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