Hoosiers eyeing Iowa


After weeks of face-to-face campaigning and millions of dollars spent on advertising, Republican presidential hopefuls made last-minute appeals to undecided GOP voters in Iowa.

This is the first test for Republicans hoping to keep President Obama from a second term.

A confident Mitt Romney, considered the front-runner for the GOP nomination, predicted victory. 
The two who appear most likely to challenge Romney in Iowa are former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and Rep. Ron Paul of Texas. 
But the only sure thing is that many caucus goers are still undecided.

Many Hoosier voters are undecided, as well.

Wes Kerlin thinks, "It's a good feel for Republicans, certainly with a wide range, a variety of candidates."

"Gingrich/Romney is interesting," Kerlin said, "but it will probably be a sleeper like Santorum who'll come out, as well."

Scott Alexander, another Hoosier voter, isn't leaning toward any candidate right now. "I'll wait until the last minute and keep my options open," he said.

Hoosiers realize that Iowa will, like Indiana, play a small but important part in the race for the oval office in 2012.

And while the state's top Republicans wouldn't commit to a candidate, they did talk about what they're looking for in this election.

Mayor Greg Ballard said, "I'm looking at what is the long term health of the country - debt and energy solutions.  So we can maintain our vibrancy as a country - that is most worrisome -everything falls apart if we can't pay our bills."

Once considered a viable GOP candidate to unseat Obama, Governor Mitch Daniels is watching Iowa from his perch two states away.  "The Republican nominee would be my favorite this year," Daniels said.  I do believe for the reasons we've discussed, the lousy economy and crazy situation we are in because of our debts, that we have to have a change in national policy.  That will take a new President but I don't know which one of these folks yet will be the survivor of that process."

The interest in what's happening in Iowa may be as mixed as the decision of candidates.