Democrats win GOP Senate seat in Indiana
November 6th, 2012
10:02 PM ET
10 years ago

Democrats win GOP Senate seat in Indiana

(CNN) - Democrats scored a major upset in the Indiana race for U.S. Senate Tuesday, scooping up a seat in the deeply red state Republicans had expected to hold. The campaign appeared to turn for the Democrats after the GOP candidate made controversial comments about rape during a televised debate.

CNN projected Democratic Rep. Joe Donnelly would beat Republican Richard Mourdock, boosting the Democrats' chances of maintaining control of the Senate. Donnelly led 48 percent to 46 percent with 70 percent of the estimated vote counted at the time of the projection.

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Mourdock, the State Treasurer, was backed by both tea party supporters and the Republican establishment when he defeated longtime GOP moderate Sen. Richard Lugar in the primary. When that happened, Democrats thought Donnelly, who is conservative and pro-life, had an outside chance of winning the seat.

Mourdock gave Donnelly an opening when during a debate he defended his opposition to abortion even in the case of rape because, "I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that is something God intended to happen." Top Democrats and Republicans criticized the remark and within days, Donnelly took a substantial lead in one respected Indiana poll.

Republicans had hoped the heavily GOP and pro-life voters in Indiana would rally behind Mourdock and provide him a margin of victory.

Filed under: 2012 • Joe Donnelly
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. Woman In California

    Thank you God.

    Congratulations Mr. Donnelly.
    Job well done.

    November 6, 2012 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  2. Turnabout is Fair Play

    Buh bye Murdock and Todd Akins, take your beliefs about rape with you. You have LOST. Can you feel the wave of Obama power neo-cons? It's a tsunami coming through right NOW. Myth Robme is NONE AND DONE.

    November 6, 2012 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  3. GI Joe

    WTG Dems

    November 6, 2012 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  4. HJ Hokie

    I hope that the Republican Party takes the correct message from this election cycle – Extremists in your party are driving people into the democratic party even in a year when you should win the presidential election in a landslide. Please give us a legitimate option to the democratic party and your version of the American Taliban is certainly not it.

    November 6, 2012 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  5. RogueRobots

    Another Tea Party Taliban candidate bites the dust. Thank you to all moderate Repubs who voted against extremism in your party.

    November 6, 2012 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  6. anagram_kid

    HJ Hokie wrote –
    I hope that the Republican Party takes the correct message from this election cycle

    Fat chance that will happen! My bet is they will double down and start spewing that contraception is unnatural and that since they feel it is God's will that women are submissive there is really no such thing as rape. This is what stupid people do when faced with the option of learning and growing or retreating into their world of intellectual vacancy; they will always find comfort in willful ignorance.

    November 6, 2012 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  7. nothing new here

    Hey Republicans – you all should have stuck with the old Barry Goldwater standards.
    See what happens when you stray from the fold?
    BTW – good riddance to bad rubbish like Akin and Mourdock.

    November 6, 2012 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  8. GI Joe

    It was God's Will.

    November 7, 2012 01:27 am at 1:27 am |