Three days ago the Indiana Daily Student reported that the only Democratic challenger to Evan Bayh was a little short of collecting the necessary signatures.

But if [Former Repubican Sen. Dan] Coats wants any chance of getting on the ballot, he still has to collect 500 petition signatures from each of Indiana’s nine congressional districts before Tuesday’s deadline.

Indiana Democratic Party Chair Dan Parker said Bayh’s camp collected all 4,500 signatures 10 days ago and are filing next week.

Bloomington resident Tamyra d’Ippolito, the only Democratic challenger, said she’s roughly 1,000 signatures short, which could lead to a free pass for Bayh through the May 4 primary.

By waiting to announce his retirement until the day before the filing deadline, Evan Bayh has all but assured that no one other than Ms. d’Ippolito can get on the ballot. And it’s not certain that she can get on it either. If she does, she’ll still be a longshot. This is from a Dec. 16th, 2009 piece in Hoosier Pundit:

Bloomington restaurant owner Tamyra d’Ippolito has never run for political office. In fact, her only experience is twice managing underdog campaigns for Indiana University graduate student adviser Gretchen Clearwater in primary challenges to Ninth District Democrat Baron Hill. And d’Ippolito admits she’s perhaps over-matched against Bayh’s well-established presence in the state.

“He’s comes from a political womb and I’m a mere citizen. But I’m not a multi-millionaire like Evan Bayh. But whatever I can do, I’ll do it,” she says.

The first step in her campaign to unseat Bayh is collecting the 45-hundred signatures necessary for her to appear on May’s ballot. It’s a task she says favors the wealthy and protects career politicians.

“Four-thousand five-hundred signatures, from all over Indiana, registered voters, 500 hundred from each [congressional] district. It is a full-time job. I think it is completely bogus for a candidate to have to do this to run for office,” d’Ippolito says.

D’Ippolito has until Valentine’s Day to turn in her petitions. She admits her odds of defeating Bayh are long – he’s won his past three statewide elections with more than 60 percent of the vote.

But d’Ippolito, an uninsured colon cancer survivor, says Bayh’s lack of support for current health care legislation indicates he is unwillingly to address the hundreds of thousands of Hoosiers like her who do not have health coverage. She also accuses Bayh of seldom taking strong positions on issues, especially for a Senator who has won so convincingly.

“If people are thrilled with what Evan Bayh is doing, they will vote for him again. But from talking to people, I think most people think he’s disconnected with the people from Indiana,” she says.

Evan Bayh is a dick.

Update [2010-2-15 15:0:40 by BooMan]: If no one gets the signatures, the Party can select someone. So, now we’re left hoping that d’Ippolito fails to get her signatures? The no-hope progressive vs. some anti-choice version of Evan Bayh? Nice.

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