Snow likely Saturday

Milder air will be with us on Saturday ahead of a cold front and our high will rise above freezing, into the mid-30s. We’ll have clouds after midday and snow is likely from the clouds after midnight, through midday Sunday. Accumulation amounts will be less than one inch.

Milder air will be with us on Saturday ahead of a cold front and our high will rise above freezing, into the mid-30s. We’ll have clouds after midday and snow is likely from the clouds after midnight, through midday Sunday. Accumulation amounts will be less than one inch.

Saturday Forecast: cold
Morning Low: 17   High: 35   Sky: Mostly cloudy

Sunday Forecast: Less than 1″ snow
Morning Low: 26   High: 33   Sky: Snow

Monday Forecast: cold
Morning Low: 16   High: 32   Sky: Partly cloudy

Tuesday Forecast: dry
Morning Low: 24   High: 38   Sky: Partly cloudy

Wednesday Forecast: fog with a 40% chance for rain
Morning Low: 30   High: 42   Sky: Rain

Looking back on Election Night

Eyewitness News political reporter Kevin Rader takes a look back at Decision 2012 and the vote in Indiana and across the nation.

And so it goes.

Governor Mitt Romney wins the fight in Indiana, but loses the war. President Barack Obama wins the day and four more years.

In Indiana, Congressman Joe Donnelly gets a promotion. He moves from representing a district that was actually redistricted from underneath him by Republican lawmakers to a seat in the United States Senate. For Donnelly, redistricting wasn’t an end, it was an opportunity.

He has Richard Mourdock to thank for that. When Mourdock upset 36-year incumbent Richard Lugar, Republicans knew they would have a fight on their hands to keep the seat. Mourdock may have thought fellow Republicans would rally to his cause, but that never really happened.

It was an uneasy alliance, at best.

When a third party PAC sent out a mailer saying Richard Lugar endorsed the Mourdock campaign, the Lugar camp only said that it would vote for him, nothing more. The message was clear. Lugar would not campaign for the man who defeated him. Lugar supporters took the cue. Some would hold their bitterness and vote for Mourdock, but most would cross over or vote Libertarian.

While Mourdock tried to rally his base, Donnelly worked to expand his. Recognizing an opportunity, he went after Lugar Republicans.

Then, Mourdock delivered a gift that cemented his demise – the off-handed comment about abortion in cases of rape. It echoed not only around the state, but the entire country. It fed extremist fears that Democrats everywhere tried to use to show Republicans were waging a war on women. From that day on, all Joe Donnelly had to do is go through the motions: the election was his.

In the race for governor, we have all been entertained by the John Gregg campaign commercials.  But even as I watched, I often thought if he were running for mayor of Sandborn he would win. I envisioned, instead, a commercial showing him walking down a long road, talking about where we’ve come from and where we needed to go. Something more serious, with more direction, more purpose. His campaign showed me once again why we like John Gregg, but we’ve always known he was a nice man, but I don’t think we knew enough about why he should be elected governor.

Congressman Mike Pence ran an above-the-fray campaign. He inherited a mantle from Governor Mitch Daniels, just by being a member of the same political party. Hoosiers assumed he would just continue in Daniels footsteps.

They were comfortable with that.

Pence tried hard not to disrupt that sentiment or alarm anyone. Status quo was the unspoken theme of the campaign, until Mourdock’s comments. It raised alarmist fears and his opponent tried to tie him to Mourdock. It gave voters pause, but in the end, it was not enough to make Hoosiers change their minds. They want continuity. Pence could offer that, Gregg could not.

Now Mike Pence will hold a press conference with Governor Daniels on Wednesday morning. The two will talk of transition and the future. That is good, because voters are tired of all the negative ads and negative words.  Now they want to be reassured.  They want a respite from politics. They want to talk about the Colts and the Pacers and – can you believe it? – I think they want to just see a regular TV commercial again.

Anticipation grows for RNC opening

The first full day here at the Republican National Convention in Tampa promises to be huge.

Kevin Rader/Eyewitness News

The first full day here at the Republican National Convention in Tampa promises to be huge.

We will have the roll call of the states, which is just one of the many traditions that I so treasure. I know these days it has evolved into a mere formality and I know some states take the opportunity to say the craziest things, but it is a rare piece of Americana.

“The great state of Indiana would like to cast.”

I love hearing those words. It is something that is ours and only ours. It is the voice of America.

Then, we will hear from the voice the Romney campaign believes can captivate America, that of Ann Romney. The campaign believes she knows the candidate better than anyone and it also believes she will be able to convince viewers he is the right choice for America, the comforting voice that will reach out to women.

They are putting so much stock into that, there is belief that Governor Romney himself will make an appearance in the hall to hear it. It will be the photo op of the two together that the campaign hopes will help build momentum to when he actually accepts the nomination later in the week. A chance to show that this family, despite the differences in religion, income and pedigree, is not that much different than the rest of us.

It will be a tall order.

And then don’t forget New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will deliver what promises to be a firebrand speech culminating the evening. Christie is never one to pull punches and that is why he has the primetime slot.

It will not most likely win the ratings war for the night, but it should. This is, some would argue, America at its worst, but not me. I still believe in those voices. Not of the candidates, but the delegates.

“The great state of Indiana would like to cast.”

I, for one, can’t wait. 

These conventions are a chance for Americans to state what they believe in. I believe I am not alone when I say I am anxious to hear it.

Another view of Media Day fun

Of all the things I’ve been able to do through my career in television, today might have been the coolest.

Of all the things I’ve been able to do through my career in television, today might have been the coolest.

That statement is likely to change while Jim Nabors sings at this year’s Indianapolis 500, but for right now, Super Bowl Media Day might be the highlight of my broadcast career. Thing is, even with a man in a large fur hat, another in a cape and superhero mask and a Spanish-speaking female reporter encouraging players to Salsa dance in a sombrero, it seemed tame compared to the Super Bowl Media Days I’ve seen video of in the past.

But still, for a sports fan and career journalist, it was beyond cool to “people watch” as personalities from ESPN, NFL network, broadcast networks, top-flight newspapers and everywhere in between zipped by, making their way from station to station, player to player was almost dizzying.

Even better, my role at Media Day was almost like a fly on the wall. I was there to get pictures, tweet some pictures and observations, then come home and write about it. I can’t imagine the effort our team of photographers and reporters (not to mention hundreds of others) put forth, pushing through the crowd to get their questions asked and answered, all with a mind toward putting the story on the air for the news.

And speaking of asking and answering, the directions the players were pulled in the 60-minute sessions was fascinating. In each team’s session, the head coach (Bill Belichick even smiled! Twice, I think!) and a couple of stars were mobbed by cameras and microphones, while about a dozen others fielded a steady stream of questions from passing reporters and a couple more from each team were set up in the stands, talking to a smaller group of reporters, and mostly only ones with a specific interest in their story.

With any credentialed media member available to ask questions, the inquiries were widely varied. One minute, Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz was answering questions in Spanish, the next in English. Student reporters would ask a player “what is it like to be an NFL player?” and a moment later, the same player would be asked to break down the opponent’s defense. A caped reporter from Nickelodeon asked players about their favorite superhero, while another reporter convinced Giants safety Antrel Rolle to belt out a chorus of Madonna’s “Material Girl.”

He declined a verse of “Like A Virgin,” for personal reasons, he explained.

Among the crowd were stand-up comedians Nick DiPaolo and Artie Lange, the latter formerly of “The Howard Stern Show,” who now host a talk show on satellite radio. Lange was the one that got the stoic Belichick to crack, posing a question from an alleged Twitter user about the intricacies of basketball’s zone defense.

“I’m not a basketball guy. I’m a football guy,” Belichick replied, smiling before turning to more pressing questions.

In the past year alone, I’ve attended the Kentucky Derby, Indianapolis 500 and Game 6 of the World Series, but today’s experience ranked up there with all of them. If what everyone has been saying is true, I can’t wait for Indianapolis to host the Super Bowl again…or even just the Media Day.

Media Day photos on Facebook

WTHRcom on Twitter

Indianapolis mayoral debate with Indiana Insiders

WTHR asked Indiana Insider analysts Peter Rusthoven (R) and Robin Winston (D) for their thoughts on Saturday night’s mayoral debate at the University of Indianapolis. Here are their responses.

Mayor Greg Ballard and Melina Kennedy

WTHR asked Indiana Insider analysts Peter Rusthoven (R) and Robin Winston (D) for their thoughts on Saturday night’s mayoral debate at the University of Indianapolis. Here are their responses. Please note that WTHR does not endorse these statements and that they are the opinions attributed to each individual commentator only.

From Peter:

This debate provided a good window on the candidates and the choice in this year’s Mayoral election.

 Melina Kennedy comes across as exactly what she is – a lawyer and a poltico, a critic and a talker.

Mayor Ballard comes across as exactly what he is – a Marine, a leader, a doer.

If you had to pick one of these two people to do a tough job that was personally important to you and your family, where “talking good” meant nothing and getting results meant everything, there’s no question you would hire the Marine and the doer, not the lawyer and the talker.  And you’d be right.

That’s exactly the choice faced by the City of Indianapolis and it citizens.  They should make the same decision. 

 From Robin:

What we witnessed tonight was an absolute affirmation that Melina Kennedy has the skills to be our next Mayor.  In every category she demonstrated a keen knowledge of the subject matter, the ability to offer sensible solutions and a commitment to inclusion.  Melina’s background in tangible economic development will give us a Mayor that understands how to package the City, offer the inducements and incentives necessary to retain and recruit new jobs and will provide us with an advocate for economic development at the regional and national level.  As a small business owner, Melina has the skills and knowledge to understand what it is like to sign both the front and the back of checks.  She helps makes payroll for others so that they can support their families.
Her steadfast commitment to supporting our public and private schools started early and has been reinforced throughout.  While others have mocked her for taking on education, the level of interest demonstrated by the panelists and those from the audience who posed questions shows that education does matter.  She is right to take on this issue because it impacts our ability to be viable for job creation and to combat crime.
One of the hallmarks of a Kennedy administration will be to be open and frank.  All of us who pay to park recognize the rate increases and the extension of hours that has resulted in increased fees.  To accuse Melina of raising taxes is at best disingenuous.  Melina has never raised taxes.  That’s a fact.
Having strong leadership as Mayor is absolutely essential for public safety.  Melina earned the endorsement of the members of the Fraternal Order of Police because of her commitment to building a new team of leadership in public safety.  She understands that those who do an outstanding job in public safety deserve a partner as Mayor.  She will be that partner.
As I have said for years, GOTV is a term used by many to describe winning elections.  To some, it means Get On TV.  I disagree.  It means Get Out the Vote.  Melina’s performance tonight provides those who were undecided a chance to ask one basic question between now and Election Day—Do I care enough to vote for better jobs, a partner in education, reducing taxes and fees for small businesses and for a candidate supported by our police?  If they do, then we will have change and Melina Kennedy as a new Mayor.  
I know that some of you who read this have already made up your mind.  That’s great.  Now use your leadership and contacts to do one more thing—help Melina by Getting Out the Vote now and before November 8th.   And if you disagree with my opinion, please don’t hide behind anonymous blog posts.  I had to sign my name to post this.  You should do the same.  
Thank you for reading and for watching Channel 13.

Stuck inside!

I’ve been stuck at home, but never stuck INSIDE. Wednesday morning, I came all too close.

I’ve been stuck at home, but never stuck INSIDE. Wednesday morning, I came all too close.

My dogs wanted out in the backyard, but the back door wouldn’t budge. It was iced in. I tried pushing to no avail. I went to the front door and same thing. Stuck. Not good.

How about the garage? A neighbor advised me to leave it open a couple of inches to prevent freezing… thank goodness I listened. It opened and was able to get outside…but the dogs wanted out back.

I grabbed a hoe and clumsily climbed a back fence, nearly falling flat on my face. After 15 minutes of chopping, I had cleared enough to let my two lab mixes squeeze through the back door (without even a doggy kiss of thanks.)

I left for work thinking… wow, could have been a much longer morning. I wondered how many other people faced the same thing? It didn’t take long to find out. We quickly found one man who couldn’t get out the front door, but managed to get out the back. And soon we found Stacy – who found both of her doors iced shut. Stacy had moved to Indianapolis from Florida last summer, a chilly welcome. She said preparing for the storm was like preparing for a hurricane except she went out of her way to find firewood. Luckily, she still had power and several days worth of food. When asked if we could do anything, she said she’d be fine. She had no plans to go anywhere the rest of the day and her computer was on… she was connected to the outside world.

We found another woman who had just finished digging out. She said she had to remove the storm door window and salt the front, hacking away at the ice with a shovel until the door moved. It made shovelling six inches of snow look like scooping up cotton balls.

Everyone we encountered was good-natured. Misery loves company and yes, it could have been worse. It could always be worse. But this was winter, and like every other winter, this one would soon melt into spring…but I don’t think too many people would mind if the big thaw got an early start.

– Mary Milz

Cold weekend on tap

Get ready for a cold weekend with lows near 10 degrees and highs near 20.

Get ready for a cold weekend with lows near 10 degrees and highs near 20. We’ll have few snow showers Saturday. Colts fans will endure the coldest game conditions of the season with temperatures in the teens and wind chill near zero.

Talkin’ baseball

The baseball season is winding down and, thanks to a team from Texas, the game is fun for me again.

So the mid-year resolution of writing here once a week or more isn’t doing all that hot. But I bet I can do better.

For the first time in 23 years, I’m sitting on the eve of the World Series, with an actual rooting interest in the outcome. Sure, I was a “new” Braves fan when they went worst-to-first and lost  the 1991 Series to Minnesota, but it hasn’t been since those same Twins in 1987 (same, but different, that roster turned over big time in four years) that I cared who won the Fall Classic. And the only real reason I cheered for the Twins is I “knew” many of the players from their minor league days. Before that, it was the 1979 Pirates in a Series, but I was five and still just rooting in my father’s shadow.

But this year is different.

On December 8, 1988, I woke up a die-hard Cleveland Indians fan. By the end of the afternoon, my favorite player, Julio Franco had been traded to Texas and, for whatever reason, I became a Rangers fan.

Almost 22 years later, I’m still here, and “my” Rangers are four wins from a championship. It’s unbelievable.

A lot of bad has been said about the Rangers this year, and maybe I’m a little (okay, a lot) biased, but I think it’s a good story. Manager Ron Washington (who played in the minors with a number of those ’87 Twins) admitted to trying cocaine last year, but kept his job. He now gets tested regularly by MLB officials and has been clean since. Stud outfielder Josh Hamilton has fought much more serious demons, has gotten a second, if not third, chance and is also living clean and being a role model to youth groups to not take the same path.

Even the entire franchise is taking advantage of a second chance. After years of mismanaged finances, the team went into bankruptcy, but has emerged with Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan as part of the ownership group. It’s new life for the team and it seems to show.

I’ve been a baseball fan pretty much since birth, but in recent years, it’s lost some of the fun. This year’s Rangers have made it fun again. I just hope they can finish the job.