News and Tribune

November 7, 2012

Most area Statehouse candidates hold off challengers


> SOUTHERN INDIANA — Indiana Statehouse incumbents running with districts extending into Clark and Floyd counties were able to fend off their challengers, with one race to close to call as of press time.

House District 72

In District 72 — which covers portions of Floyd County including New Albany, Floyds Knobs and Edwardsville — Republican Ed Clere defeated Democratic challenger Sharon Grabowski with 16,172 total votes, or 54.8 percent, to 13,348, or 45.2 percent.

Following the win Clere, 38, a real estate broker, said “I am grateful for the trust and confidence the people have placed in me.”

Entering his third term in office, Clere said the premier task is to develop a state budget and to work across party lines.

“Many of us are bothered by the hyper-partisan environment and we need to work together to find ways to bridge the divide,” he said. “There’s no reason we shouldn’t be able to come together on a budget.”

Clere added that in developing a budget and working toward other legislation in the next session he will be “keeping job creation as the central focus.”

“It’s time to come together,” he said. “As always, I will do the best to represent everyone in my district.”

House District 66

Long-time incumbent Democrat Terry Goodin in Indiana House District 66 was able to hold off Republican challenger Justin Stevens by a margin of 13,161 votes to 12,010 votes.

Goodin, 45, superintendent of Crothersville Schools, will enter his seventh term in the Statehouse to represent the district that includes most of southeast Jackson County, Marion Township in Jennings County, three townships in Scott County and eastern Clark County.

Goodin said he wants to continue to keep taxes low for Hoosiers and make sure the state continues to live within its means while working to reduce the acrimony in the state government, but the biggest issue facing his district is jobs.

House District 70

Incumbent Republican Rhonda Rhoads held of Democratic challenger Terry Miller in House District 70 — 16,850 votes to 12,822 votes.

District 70 includes most of Harrison County, Corydon and portions of Charlestown and Sellersburg. Rhoads, 62, is a retired teacher and will enter her second term in office. She said the main tasks she plans to tackle are balancing the budget, building a reserve, securing all-day funding for kindergarten, plus giving a little back to the people.

House District 73

The race between incumbent Republican Steve Davisson and Democratic challenger Sandra Blanton in the race for House District 73 was too close to call as of press time.

Blanton had a slight lead in vote totals with 5,387 total votes to Blanton’s 5,346, with Lawrence and Washington County figures still outstanding.

District 73 includes Salem, portions of Henryville, Crawford County, most of Perry and Washington counties, eastern Dubois County, Western Scott County and Southern Jackson County.

Davisson, 54, a pharmacist, is seeking his second term in office. Blanton, 63, a retired accountant served in the Statehouse from 2008-10 in District 62 and said she will bring her knowledge of cost and budgets to the position.

Check today for updates on this race.

District 71

Incumbent Democrat Steve Stemler for District 71, which covers Southern Clark County, Jeffersonville, Clarksville, Utica and portions of Sellersburg and Charlestown was unopposed in the general election and received 19,374 votes.

Stemler was elected to serve his fourth term as state representative.