INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Mayor Joe Hogsett on Tuesday set up a contested mayoral primary with his announcement he would seek a third four-year term.
The two-term Democrat told supporters in a speech at the Indianapolis City Market he would seek a third and final term as the city’s mayor. If he is reelected and serves out the term in full, he would become the city’s second-longest serving mayor.
“All I can see as I stand here tonight is tomorrow,” he said. “I’m not here to talk about yesterday. I’m here to talk about the next four years.”
Hogsett said he would continue to pursue many of the policies that marked his second term, including a violence-reduction plan and using public-private partnerships to redevelop parts of the city. He said unlike at the state and federal levels, nearly all of the policies the City-County Council had approved during his tenure got support from both Republicans and Democrats. He said he will fight to keep partisanship out of city government.
The guest list for his speech was a who’s-who of Marion County Democrats. They include state Sen. Greg Taylor, the Senate minority leader; Vos Osili, the president of the Indianapolis City-County Council; and Myla Eldridge, chair of the Marion County Democratic Party.
Hogsett, 66, told News 8 last week he still wasn’t sure about his future, calling it a “50/50 proposition.”
State Rep. Robin Shackleford, 52, last week announced plans to run for the Democratic Party bid for mayor. She issued a statement after Hogsett’s announcement, welcoming the challenge.
Democratic voters will select a candidate in the May primary.
No Republicans have announced plans to run against the Democratic Party nominee.
Hogsett’s campaign had about $2.4 million on hand at the beginning of this year. That’s from his most recent campaign filing.
“Two terms of Joe Hogsett as mayor of Indianapolis have delivered year after year of record violence and homicides, crumbling infrastructure, a failing downtown, undelivered public services, and struggling neighborhoods across our once thriving city.
“Even Democrat Rep. Robin Shackleford described Joe Hogsett’s Indianapolis as a city with ‘… pothole-ridden streets where residents struggle to get enough to eat and worry that at any moment a stray bullet will travel through their wall and strike their child.’
“Over the next year, residents of our capital city have to decide if the status quo of crime, crumbling streets, and inequity is acceptable, or if they want a new direction.”
Joe Elsener, chairman, Marion County Republican Central Committee
“I welcome the exchange of ideas that the coming months of the campaign will bring. As I said when I announced my candidacy, I am running for mayor because I am the right person to address the issues facing Indianapolis that have not been solved in the past eight years – issues such as tackling root causes of crime; creating a world class workforce; prioritizing diversity, equity and inclusion; and increasing transportation connectivity and infrastructure. I bring legislative leadership, extensive knowledge about healthcare and the criminal justice system, and the experience of being a lifelong Indianapolis resident to the campaign.
“I look forward to hearing from the citizens of Indianapolis about their biggest concerns and their ideas in the months leading up to the primary and I will be releasing specific policy proposals in the near future.”
State Rep. Robin Shackleford, D-Indianapolis, candidate for Indianapolis mayor