Fulfilling his grandmother’s wish, the voters of Indiana’s seventh congressional district sent her “seed,” Indianapolis City County Councilman Andre Carson, to congress to fulfill her unexpired term. With 100% of the precincts reporting, Carson was elected with 54% of the vote to Republican Jon Elrod’s 43%. The race begins anew to serve in the 111th Congress to be seated next January. In Indiana’s May Democratic Primary, Carson faces determined opposition in the form of three contenders: State Rep. Carolene Mays, publisher of the black paper of record, the Indianapolis Recorder, former state health commissioner Woody Myers, and State Rep. David Orentlicher.
Mays and Myers as African Americans will provide Carson,33, with some stiff competition for African American votes in this majority white congressional district leaving Orentlicher free to persue white voters by himself. The Indianapolis Star, the paper of record, refused to endorse Congressman Elect Carson and gave their nod to Jon Elrod. I suspect that they will again refuse to endorse him a will give the nod to Orentlicher instead.
With his election, he becomes the second Muslim American elected to the United States Congress, a fact that hasn’t gone unnoticed in the surreptitious character assassination and guilt by association that has characterized this race. Carson has had to defend himself from charges of being associated with Minister Louis Farrakhan, a friend of his grandmother’s who attended her funeral and voiced support for his candidacy.
The newest member of the Congressional Black Caucus has much to prove and little time in which to prove it. I wish him Godspeed.