Republican Holcomb wins reelection as Indiana governor

Republican Eric Holcomb has won reelection as Indiana governor, fending off challengers who criticized his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Holcomb went into his campaign for a second term with a huge fundraising advantage and didn’t face any well-known challengers. Holcomb sidestepped any criticism of President Donald Trump even as Holcomb promoted face mask use and issued a statewide mask mandate in July.

Holcomb overcame Democrat Woody Myers, a former state health commissioner who called for tougher anti-virus actions as Indiana’s COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations climbed steeply since nearly all state restrictions were lifted in September.

Some conservatives called Holcomb’s actions excessive and were, instead, backing Libertarian candidate Donald Rainwater.

With 6% of the vote tallied, Holcomb had 64% compared to 25% for Myers and 11% for Rainwater, AP reported.

Holcomb was lieutenant governor under then-Gov. Mike Pence and replaced Pence as the Republican governor candidate in 2016 after Pence became Trump’s vice presidential running mate.

Republicans were poised to continue their Indiana political dominance as voters cast this year’s final ballots Tuesday, although Democrats had some chances to claw back to greater relevance.

A record number of more than 1.7 million voters have cast ballots ahead of Election Day as coronavirus health concerns prompted more use of mail-in ballots and early voting sites.

Long lines of voters formed at some polling places in Indianapolis and its suburbs before doors opened in the cold, predawn darkness.

Holcomb faced plenty of criticism over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic since he first issued a public health emergency in March. Through it all, he kept up his front-runner campaign for a second term with large advantages of name identification, fundraising and organization.

Myers argued Holcomb has been too passive by not imposing penalties for those not wearing face masks in public and for lifting nearly all coronavirus restrictions on businesses and crowd sizes in September just as the state saw steep increases in coronavirus-related deaths, infections and hospitalizations.

Please enable JavaScript to view this content.

{{ articles_remaining }}
Free {{ article_text }} Remaining
{{ articles_remaining }}
Free {{ article_text }} Remaining Article limit resets in {{ count_down }} days.