John Dickerson hasn’t been in politics, but he is a fresher face than the other Democratic candidate, former Rep. Baron Hill.
By Gretchen Frazee
Democrats have another choice for U.S. Senate after John Dickerson announced his candidacy this weekend.
Dickerson isn’t a politician. He’s never even run for office. Instead, he’s run a nonprofit group, The Arc of Indiana, for more than 30 years.
Political analyst Ed Feigenbaum says that makes him different from the other Democratic candidate, former Rep. Baron Hill.
“If we’re talking about an election that’s going to be defined as generational change and change in the direction of the country, John Dickerson, from a policy perspective, would be a good choice for the Democrats to have on the ballot,” Feigenbaum says.
However, Feigenbaum also points out Dickerson, like many of the 2016 Democratic candidates, is in his 60s, so he might not appeal to younger voters.
“There’s not a lot of young fresh faces on the Democratic side, and that could be a disadvantage for them,” Feigenbaum says.
Dickerson does have some good support, though. He’s been backed by former Lt. Gov. Kathy Davis, who Feigenbaum says wouldn’t support someone she didn’t think had the political know-how to make it in the Senate.
But even if Dickerson gained the Democratic nomination, could he beat one of the three Republican candidates who are well-versed in the political arena?
The answer could be determined by which GOP candidate wins.
Both Rep. Todd Young, R-Ind. District 9, and former state GOP chair Eric Holcomb are considered establishment candidates, so if the votes for them are split, Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind. District 3, could come out as the nominee.
Stutzman is considered the far-right candidate, and Feigenbaum says his nomination could keep some GOP voters on the sidelines or cause some moderates to vote Democratic.
“There’s an opportunity, perhaps, at least under one scenario for Dickerson or Baron Hill to do well simply because they are not the Republican nominee,” Feigenbaum says.
Dickerson will face Hill in the Democratic primary.