Gubernatorial candidates make last-minute push

Democrat John Gregg
Published: .
Updated: .

The candidates for Indiana governor are making a last-minute push for votes across the state.

In the last two months, Democrat John Gregg has cut Republican Mike Pence's lead in the polls dramatically. Pence made campaign stops Monday in Mishawaka, St. John, Evansville and Jeffersonville. Gregg visited Jeffersonville, Evansville and Terre Haute.

Pence has seen his seemingly insurmountable14 percentage point lead cut in half. That is expected in any campaign, insists Republican Indiana Insider Peter Rusthoven.

"I am not surprised it has tightened from what seemed a double-digit lead to what is a fairly comfortable lead," Rusthoven said.

The lead is now seven percent, according the latest independent poll.

To secure an upset victory, Gregg must grab the coattails of better known, heavy-hitting Democrats, says Democratic insider Robin Winston.

"He has to say, 'I am running with Joe Donnelly. I'm running with Pete Visclosky. I am running with Andre Carson.' Proven vote-getters that are going to have tremendous returns tomorrow night. He has to say I am on that ticket," Winston said.

At the City-County Building Monday, the long line of early voters stretched out the door, down the block and around the corner. Both political parties agree returns from Indianapolis and its surrounding counties will be good early indicators of which way the race will end.

Democrats, however, will also be watching their reliable strongholds.

"Look to northwest Indiana where Lake County is located, Porter is located, La Porte County, a sleeper county, and don't forget John is from southwestern Indiana, so Evansville, the communities around Evansville," said Winston.

Rusthoven, however, has a different view. He insists Indiana's early results in the president's race are the simplest indicator of who will win Indiana's governor's race.

"This is a year in which the presidential candidate is going to lead the Republican ticket. If Pence is running 3-6 points behind Romney, he's in great shape. Great shape," Rusthoven said.

That assumes all the predictions are right and Republican Mitt Romney wins Indiana and Indiana voters don't split their tickets.

Both parties expect a winner to be declared early in the evening. The Indiana Insiders agree the campaign controversies in the Senate race, shouldn't have any effect on the governor's race.

Decision 2012 Election Guide