By STUART HIRSCH
(Anderson) Herald Bulletin
Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Gregg is right where he wants to be, he told supporters at Lucy’s Family Dining on East County Road 67 Wednesday in a joint appearance with U.S. Senate candidate Joe Donnelly.
According to a new poll conducted for the Democratic Governors Association by the Washington, D.C., research firm Clarity Campaign Labs, Gregg and opponent U.S. Rep. Mike Pence are in a statistical dead heat, just six days ahead of Election Day.
The survey of 895 likely voters statewide was conducted between Oct. 24-26. It shows that Gregg (44 percent) has pulled to within three percentage points of Pence (47 percent), with 9 percent of likely voters saying they are still undecided.
So what was the message to about 50 Democrats at Lucy’s early Wednesday morning?
Work harder. Dig deep. Make a few more phone calls. Reach out to independents and disaffected Republicans.
“I want to ask you for some help,” said Gregg’s running mate, state Sen. Vi Simpson, before Gregg entered the room. “The truth of the matter is, the politicians have done just about all we can do. ... Now it’s time to hand it off to you because the power’s in your hands to make this a victory.”
She said many Republicans feel deserted by “tea party crusaders” at the top of their ticket, she said. “Every day we have moderate Republicans coming up to us and saying ‘we need a home.’”
She said Democrats are happy to provide one for them.
Donnelly told the crowd that “we’re here to make sure at the end of the day we give our children an even stronger, better and more wonderful America. That is our obligation.”
Donnelly said he and Gregg won’t fight and aren’t interested in “crazy ideologies.”
“We just want to do what needs to be done.”
Gregg said he’s steadily gained ground on Pence over the past month because Hoosiers “don’t want that extremist tea party agenda shoved down their throats.”
He said Pence has taken stands against autoworkers and supported free trade policies that have decimated the middle class.
If Indiana Democrats are able to get out the vote and defeat Republican senatorial candidate Richard Mourdock and Pence, it would be the first time since 1964.