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The Herald Bulletin - 11:33 p.m.: Long Thompson Rallies in Anderson

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Location: Anderson, IN

The Herald Bulletin - 11:33 p.m.: Long Thompson Rallies in Anderson

Aleasha Sandley

Cheers and chants of "Jill" erupted from the porch of the Madison County Democrat headquarters Friday as Democrat gubernatorial candidate Jill Long Thompson's tour bus pulled up.

About 40 city and county Democrat leaders, including Anderson Mayor Kris Ockomon, state Reps. Scott Reske and Terri Austin, state Sen. Tim Lanane, gathered to welcome an appearance by the candidate and her choice for lieutenant governor, Dennie Oxley, and to encourage a strong campaign effort right up until Election Day.

"It is not in the bag," Austin said. "This is no time for us to rest on our laurels. Not only is this country headed in the wrong direction, so is this state."

Long Thompson and Oxley visited Anderson as part of their Road to Change Tour, in which they will visit 61 Indiana cities and towns before Election Day. The pair also visited New Castle, Richmond, Winchester and Muncie on Friday.

"We think every community in this state is important," Long Thompson said. "I think this is going to be not just a good year for Democrats, but a good year for Hoosiers."

Long Thompson and Oxley touted their One Indiana Plan, which would reform the state's tax structure, allow a pooling option for small businesses to decrease the cost of health care and attract economic development to the hardest hit counties by using a three-tiered system.

The two also plan to overhaul education, citing poor graduation rates and a lack of resources for teachers. They plan to reform the No Child Left Behind Act and invest in vocational education.

"Every decision Mitch Daniels makes is wrong," Long Thompson said, citing Daniels' budget adviser position under President George W. Bush. "We cannot afford another four years of Bush-Daniels economics. I'm running for governor to be a partner in change with the next president of the United States."

Oxley said the state had high unemployment rates, lost jobs and lower wages than the national average.

"The Bush-Daniels economy is devastating our state; it is crippling Hoosier families," he said.

Lanane said he was confident the Madison County Democrats and Long Thompson's campaign could help Indiana vote Democrat on Election Day.

"We have an opportunity to turn Indiana from the first red state that goes on the board to a blue Democratic state," he said.

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