“Senator Coats’ drawing card, of course, is that he is well known. His name is very popular, it's well known. He has a proven record from the area being a conservative leader” says Steve Shine, chairman of the Allen County Republican Party.
Coats, a Republican, served in the 1990s as a U.S. Senator for the state of
“Given the fact that he was this area's representative in congress, he still has a network of supporters, of grassroots volunteers, who are working hard to get his name on the ballot” says Shine.
To get on the ballot for the May primary, Coats will need to get 500 signatures from each of the state’s 9 congressional districts, 4500 signatures total across the state by February 18.
“Right now senator coats and his volunteer staff are working diligently to get those signatures and I would believe this area would e the easiest of all the districts” Shine says.
Certainly the amount of campaign money will be an issue for Coats, but Shine says needed more than dollars is change.
“More important than money is representing the will of the people, of the state, and I think that we have seen nationally how people are basically fed up with the direction the country is going” says Shine.
From the moment word broke that Coats might run for Senate, he had to face the many responses from his Democratic opponents.
Shine says “the mud slinging is indicative of the fear that the democrats have with regards for a ‘Coats for Senate’ candidacy.”
Coats will have to beat four other Republican candidates in the May primary including State Senator Marlin Stutzman.
Shine says Coats already has several hundred signatures from the area’s 3rd district.
Starting tomorrow at noon through next Thursday, volunteers will be downtown at the Allen County Republican Headquarters for anyone who wants to stop in and sign the petition in support of Coats’ bid for the Senate seat.