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November 5, 2012

WEB EXTRA: Indiana election quick tips for voters

INDIANAPOLIS — Q: What races are on the ballot Tuesday?

A: Indiana voters will choose a president, U.S. senator, nine members of Congress, 25 state senators and 100 House members, along with the state attorney general and superintendent of public instruction. They’ll also decide whether to retain more than 60 state and local judges.

Q: Which Indiana races matter most?

A: Indiana isn’t expected to be a factor in the presidential race as it was in 2008, when Barack Obama gave Democrats their first win in the state since 1964, but it could help determine control of the U.S. Senate. The race between Republican state Treasurer Richard Mourdock and Democratic U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly has been a toss-up for months, but a recent poll gave Donnelly the edge after Mourdock said during an Oct. 23 televised debate that a pregnancy resulting from rape was something “God intended.” The candidates and outside groups have poured millions of dollars into the campaigns.

Q: What other races should I care about?

A: The governor’s race between Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Pence and Democrat John Gregg, a former speaker of the Indiana House, could determine whether Indiana continues down the conservative Republican path launched under Mitch Daniels. Whoever wins likely will have to work with a heavy Republican majority in the Statehouse, where House Republicans hope to pick up seven seats to win a supermajority enabling them to do business without Democrats if needed.

Q: I don’t know if I’m registered to vote. How can I find out?

A: Visit www.IndianaVoters.com or call 866-IN-1-VOTE (866-461-8683) to check your voter registration and polling place. You may also call the Indiana Election Division at 800-622-4941, your county clerk or county board of voter registration.

Q. What impact does redistricting have on the ballot this year?

A. The Republican-led General Assembly redrew legislative and congressional maps last year, a process that occurs every 10 years. Many of the districts became friendlier for Republican candidates, and that contributed to more than a dozen Democratic legislators deciding to not seek re-election. In a battle of incumbents in southwestern Indiana’s House District 45, Democratic Rep. Kreg Battles and Republican Rep. Bruce Borders are both seeking re-election.

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