Hoosier GOP voters: Prepare for the spotlight

Hoosier GOP voters: Prepare for the spotlight
Posted at 5:15 PM, Apr 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-28 17:15:56-04

GREENDALE, Ind. — Indiana’s primary elections normally come late enough in the cycle that they don’t have that much of an impact on the national stage.

But the 2016 primaries have been anything but ordinary, and voters in the Hoosier State have a lot to say, especially from the right side of the aisle.

Two issues motivate Republican voters in Indiana: the Donald Trump phenomenon and John Kasich’s deal with Ted Cruz not to campaign in Indiana.

WCPO caught up with some of Greendale’s more vocal GOPers just days before Tuesday’s primary.

Local Republican Philip Neumeier said he is ready to vote for Trump.

“I think he’s going to win Indiana just like he did on the East Coast,” Neumeier said.

Walter Wilson, who said he isn’t thrilled with candidates on either ticket, agreed, saying, “My personal idea is on the Republican side, I can lean toward Donald Trump.”

Wilson said his leaning stems from the Kasich-Cruz deal, which he and others characterized as “dirty politics.”

“I don’t like the idea of Cruz and Kasich teaming up to gang up on one,” he said. “That’s not the way the election is supposed to be run.”

Hamilton County Republican Party Chair, Alex Triantafilou — a Kasich supporter — said it’s simply about a reallocation of money.

“John Kasich made the strategic decision to pull his resources out of the state where he didn’t feel he’d been as competitive, and moved to other states,” he said.

But local Trump supporter and public figure, Eric Deters, said his candidate will win the nomination without a contested convention — that is, a scenario where no candidate garners a majority of delegate votes — or any backroom deals.

“Trump is right. It shows a sign of weakness,” Deters said. “It just makes them look bad. Again, that’s another example of something backfiring and actually helping Trump.”

Political scientists at Xavier University were split on their predictions for the Republican National Convention this summer.

Sean Comer, Government Relations Director for the College of Arts and Sciences, said he thinks Trump has a real chance at the nomination.

“I think there’s a real possibility that he has the delegates and there’s no contested convention,” he said.

But Comer’s colleague and Chair of the Political Science Department, Mack Mariani, is not so sure.

“I still think a contested convention is likely, if only because when Trump seems to be doing well, he always seems to follow that with a stumble,” Mariani said.

With just a few days left before the voting actually begins, Hoosier voters can expect to be in the spotlight Tuesday.