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In Indiana, Democrat Joe Donnelly Captures Senate Seat

Posted By Election 2012 On November 7, 2012 @ 12:31 am In Bulletin Today,Politics | Comments Disabled

Democrats scored a huge coup tonight in Indiana, picking up a U.S. Senate seat in a reliably red state. But it was despite — not because of — the preferences of older voters in the state.

Democrat Joe Donnelly beat Tea Party Republican Richard Mourdock, giving Democrats a needed pickup to keep their Senate majority. But 50- to 64-year-olds, who represent 29 percent of the state’s electorate, narrowly went for Mourdock, going for the Republican 48-47 percent. Among 65-and-older voters, Donnelly fared even worse, capturing just 42 percent of that vote, compared with 55 percent for Mourdock, according to exit polls. The retirement-age group accounts for 14 percent of the electorate in Indiana. President Obama racked up similar numbers among 50+ voters, taking 47 percent of the 50- to 64-year-old age bracket (against 51 percent for Republican Mitt Romney), and earning 44 percent of the 65-and-older vote, compared with 51 percent for Romney.

During the campaign, Donnelly hammered Mourdock for his commitment to retirement programs, citing an earlier speech when Mourdock suggested Social Security [1] and Medicare [2] were unconstitutional. Mourdock said his comments were taken out of context.

—Susan Milligan


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[1] Social Security: http://www.aarp.org/work/social-security/

[2] Medicare: http://www.aarp.org/health/medicare-insurance/

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