(INDIANAPOLIS) — Indiana Democrats have wrapped up their first-ever online convention, with their nominee for governor pledging to pursue police reform and more affordable health care.
The coronavirus pandemic replaced the pageantry of Democrats’ state convention with a Zoom call, with former state health commissioner Woody Myers addressing delegates from his home. Republicans will face the same challenge next week.
Myers says racial gaps in health care have undermined Indiana’s response to the virus, while the George Floyd killing has spotlighted the need to address racism elsewhere. He vows to support reforms to police practices, oversight and training, and says it’s “way past time” to strengthen Indiana’s hate crimes law. Indiana had no hate crime law at all until last year, when Republican Governor Eric Holcomb pushed one through. Critics maintain the law is inadequate because of a catch-all clause covering anyone targeted by a discriminatory attack, not just those listed in civil rights laws.
Myers says he’d work to strengthen Indiana labor unions. He says unions are the most effective force to raise Hoosier workers’ pay. He says he’ll create “an economy that works for all Hoosiers.”
Delegates also heard from Myers’ running mate, former House Minority Leader Linda Lawson (D-
Hammond), and their two candidates for attorney general, Ogden Dunes Senator Karen Tallian and former Evansville Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel. Voting for the attorney general nomination was conducted by mail before the convention, with ballots to be counted next week and a winner to be announced on Thursday.
The convention also featured recorded messages from Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden,
national party chairman Tom Perez, and Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. All three focused on
Biden’s race against President Trump, with Perez blasting what he calls Trump’s “massive failure of
leadership” in responding to the pandemic. He says Biden would restore “competence” to the office, while also filling the president’s traditional role of consoler-in-chief in times of crisis.