A close look at election results in the donut counties shows Republican candidate Richard Mourdock grossly underperforming which enabled Democrat Joe Donnelly to become the next U.S. Senator from Indiana.
In the overall election Donnelly beat Mourdock 49.4% to 44.3%. Libertarian Andy Horning came in at 5.8%. In Marion County, Donnelly beat Mourdock 64-30. While Donnelly did not do as well as Evan Bayh in 2004, Mourdock did worse than Marvin Scott in the Circle City, who lost 66-33.
Here is a breakdown by donut county.
- Hamilton County, 54.5/36.1/9.5
- Hendricks County – 54.6/38.7/6.7
- Hancock County – 54.5/36.1/9.5
- Boone County – 54.9/37.5/7.6
- Morgan County – 56.9/35.0/8.1
- Johnson County – 55.2/37.3/7.5
- Shelby County – 51.1/39.7/9.2
Mourdock won every donut county, but he only did slightly better than Scott in 2004, and came nowhere near Dan Coats’ performance in 2010.
There are a number of factors that can be attributed for these results in the donut counties, however a line from Hendricks County GOP Chairman tends to say it best.
In general, this wasn’t the wave election Republicans expected. Looking at local and statewide election results, it’s clear that voters were willing to split ticket or bypass races altogether. As they do, voters reminded Republicans that we have to earn their votes, not just assume we’ll be the beneficiary of economic angst and opposition to the other party.
On average Mourdock received 54.4 percent of the donut county vote while Dan Coats received 65.5 percent.