Eddie Melton – Indiana’s Youngest State Senator

January 30, 2018

Sen. Melton and myself in front of Michael Jackson’s childhood home in Gary, Indiana.

Eddie Melton won a 4-way Democratic primary in 2016 to join a lonely group of legislators: only 9 out of 50 state senators in Indiana are Democrats. He got his start in politics with an appointment to the state Board of Education by then Governor Pence in 2015. An outsider to Democratic politics, he didn’t participate in party politics prior to his election and is now the Deputy Chair of the state party. Hear us chat about the war on drugs, how he gets anything done as a Democrat in a Republican-controlled legislature (supermajorities in both houses), and more.

2:50 – Is Gary, Indiana an economically depressed area?

4:20 – Can you talk about being appointed to the State Board of Education?

6:20 – What was your background leading up to your appointment to the State Board of Education?

8:00 – Were you going to run even if your predecessor didn’t retire?

9:45 – Can you talk about your 4-way primary?

11:20 – What was the darkest time of your campaign?

13:10 – Can you go more in-depth about the resistance you faced?

15:00 – What is your approach as Deputy Chair?

16:45 – What do you say who isn’t embraced by the Party?

18:25 – How does a Democrat so drastically outnumbered get anything done in Indiana?

21:45 – Can you talk about your experiences with the politics of the who, as opposed to the what?

24:45 – What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned?

25:30 – Can you talk about the heroin epidemic in Indiana?

29:00 – What’s the biggest personal challenge you’ve overcome?

30:30 – What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

34:00 – What can we do as a country to unify again?

38:00 – What can the country learn from Indiana?

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