Recent polling suggests that while former Rep. and USDA Under Secretary Jill Long Thompson was battling architect Jim Schellinger for the Democratic nomination in the May primary, Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels was getting a real head start on the general election campaign.

The Democratic primary was competitive, and the candidates had the added challenge of competing for voters’ attention with one of the last of the Democratic presidential primaries. While Schellinger had the support of much of the party establishment, Long Thompson had organized labor behind her as well as the endorsement of EMILY’s List. In the end, Long Thompson eked out a 13,769-vote victory out of 1,151,951 ballots cast. But, Long Thompson’s primary victory came at a high price; she was forced to spend nearly her entire campaign war chest, leaving her with less than $500,000 for the general election, and she picked up higher unfavorable ratings.

Meanwhile, without any primary opposition of his own and with the GOP presidential nomination long settled, Daniels used his significant cash advantage to carpet bomb the state with positive television ads touting

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