Does the Indiana Democratic Party have a candidate vetting problem?
*** BREAKING ****[March 27th, 2018]
We know it’s common for GOP elected officials to buy positions and power, they admit to it, but what about the incumbents and candidates on the other side of the aisle? Is less-than-left the Indiana Democrats new threshold?
Will the Left be as tolerant to these schemes as the Right? Will voter registration and Dem Primary turn-out skyrocket? The General?
In what has been a pretty calm race so far, the 2nd District Democrats in the 2nd Indiana US Congressional District have several Democratic candidates running for the Indiana Primary.
Mel Hall, former CEO of Press Ganey, Yatish Joshi, owner of GTA Containers Inc, and Pat Hackett, Attorney.
For months it’s been widely known to members in the party and those inquiring in the district that both Mel Hall and Yatish Joshi have outraised Pat Hackett in funds. Where those funds have come from and who gets paid have raised some eyebrows. Mel Hall continuously fundraises in Indianapolis and pays out of state consultants to run his campaign.
[More information on Yatish: March 19th the South Bend Elkhart reported:
“The U.S. Department of Defense has awarded a multi-million dollar contract to South Bend-based GTA Container Inc. The contract, totaling more than $36 million, calls for the production of collapsible fuel storage tank assemblies.”
Interestingly, Yatish founded GTA in 1988. If not for this contract, would he have been able to loan himself the funds to run his campaign(see below)?]
Yatish Joshi has also out raised Pat Hackett but both also “loaned” their campaigns hundreds of thousands of dollars. In politics, funds are how you “keep score”. So if one candidate is raising funds outside of his own district he is running to represent and both of the other candidates loan themselves money, how can we accurately keep score of momentum and thus true party momentum? But, more on that later.
With very basic research, we find an overwhelming history of Mel Hall and his love of Republican donation support.
Even to out of state senators like Richard Burr. Mel Hall likes to tout the progressiveness of his leadership at Press Ganey by talking about how his company provided insurance for same-sex couples before the landmark equality ruling by SCOTUS. While simultaneously donating to Mike Pence who signed the overwhelmingly disastrous and costly RFRA.
Then there’s Yatish Joshi. A proclaimed progressive who wants labor to work for the American people but donates to Jackie Walorski. His potential opponent[and current incumbent]. Not once, but three times under his company GTA Containers.
Pat Hackett’s donor records show a single contribution to Jill Long Thompson, a Democratic congresswoman from the Third Indiana District who was so passionate about protecting Hoosier Farmers and their history of being taken advantage that she was made Under Secretary of Agriculture for Rural Development under President Bill Clinton and in 2009, President Obama nominated her to serve on the board of the Farm Credit Administration.
So that begs the question, if you have candidates who potentially violate the “Democrat in good standing” (Indiana Democratic Party Rule) requirement for ballot positions, what exactly is John Zody and the Indiana Democratic Party using as a requirement? If both of these candidates are more favorable to the Republican Party’s platform, does that make Pat Hackett the one true Democrat in the race?
Does the Indiana Democratic Party, and its Chair, John Zody – have a progressive problem?
In the last few weeks leading up to the May 8th, 2018 Indiana Primary election, and April 9th voter registration deadline, we must hold everyone accountable, including our own.
Considering the less-than-left views, and blatantly Republican donation patterns, in some cases the MAXIMUM amounts, to not only a candidate of the opposite party but their own challenger(and even the Republican National Committee!) we would like to know, how exactly does this “vetting” thing work?
In the case of several current Democratic candidates and incumbents around the state, is the Indiana Democratic Party simply ignoring what these “Democrats” are saying with their words, votes, and money? Or is there a gross lack of attention paid to some well-connected candidates, while others are forced to be meticulous and infallible?
We commend Indiana Progressive Liberals for bringing this to light. Transparency and integrity are the keys to restoring our democracy.