Battle for the Senate: Indiana

The Indiana race pitts an anti-regulatory incumbent against a pro-environmental challenger.

Indiana presents another strong contrast in environmental views.  The Republican, Todd Young, has a rating of 3% from the League of Conservation voters.  His opponent, Evan Bayh, has a 74% rating.

Young is an Annapolis graduate and former Marine officer, who earned his MBA from night classes at the University of Chicago.  After a short stint at the Heritage Foundation, he worked as a management consultant while taking more classes at night and getting a law degree from Indiana University.  His link with the Heritage Foundation tells you pretty much everything you need to know about his policy views.  He introduced the REINS Act, a law that would block agencies from issuing major rules without specific approval from Congress. As his LCV score indicates, his voting record is consistently anti-environmental (or anti-regulatory, if you prefer).  His House website says that environmental regulations cost small businesses $281 billion per year.

His opponent, former Senator, Evan Bayh, is a lawyer and also the former Governor.  His voting record as a Senator was solidly environmental, with votes in favor of the mercury MACT, the Cash for Clunkers program and the Great Lakes interstate compact — and more notably, with a vote against confirming Bush nominee Gale Norton as Secretary of Interior. But the 74% LCV ranking is considerably lower than some other Democrats, so Bayh isn’t particularly notable for his environmentalism.

I’d summarize this race by saying that it pits an able anti-regulatory stalwart against a moderately environmental candidate.  This race, along with the seven others discussed in this series of blog posts, will determine which stance dominates the new Senate.