A couple months after I moved here last summer, I went down to Indianapolis for a weekend (the IMA had just opened their new textile gallery, which was exciting until I realized the inaugural exhibit was wedding dresses *gag*). Sunday morning I'm in a really good coffee shop with a friend, reading the paper, and there was an article about the exploding Indy crime rate--they were "approaching Milwaukee levels"--they actually compared Indy to Milwaukee--next step Detroit. Same leitmotif: convicted felons released too early, gangs, illegal aliens, "stop snitchin'."
Then, earlier this year, there was a property-tax kerfuffle, with increases 2-4 times larger than the MPS and Gov. Doyle increases up here. City income tax (which is just wrong, IMO) also increased 65%. People were already abandoning the city for Hamilton County in droves...
Queue up the 2007 mayoral election. Democrat machine was expected to re-elect the incumbent who presided over the crime wave and tax increases, as usual; GOP nominee was an underfunded retired Marine unbeholden to other politicians.
Heh. Congratulations, Mayor Ballard. :) Cartoon by Gary Varvel.
Every analysis I've read (here's a sample) is all excited about how the people realized socialism and its adherents ruin lives and voted for change. I really hope they're right, and that it turns into a national trend.
Not a single one mentioned Indiana's new Voter ID law. No buses from precinct to precinct, no ineligible individuals voting under eligible voters' names, no dead voters, fewer registrations from people claiming residence at non-existant addresses...
That has to have had an effect on turnout and results.
Maybe Wisconsin should try it.