“Christina Hale knows the difficult decision so many Hoosier families face between affording their health care, investing in their education, and paying the bills. As a single mother, she fought to ensure her son had health care even when she couldn’t afford it herself and worked to put them both through school. Through her hard work and Hoosier determination, she joined the General Assembly where she passed 60 bipartisan bills, and she’ll take that same problem-solver attitude to Congress. That couldn’t stand in sharper contrast to Victoria Spartz, whose business dealings are so suspect her own party has accused her of using her power to benefit personally. This suburban, highly-educated district is primed for Democrats to flip in November and I look forward to seeing Christina Hale serve Hoosiers in Congress come 2021.” – DCCC Chairwoman Cheri Bustos
To: Interested Parties
From: Courtney Rice, DCCC Regional Press Secretary
Date: June 2, 2020
Subject: The Case Against Victoria Spartz
Victoria Spartz emerges from tonight’s primary following a bruising, contentious contest in which candidates struggled to “[break] out from the rest of the pack.” Spartz now faces well-funded Democrat Christina Hale. Hale, who outraised candidates in both parties for three quarters in a row, starts the general election in a strong position to communicate her message and flip this suburban, highly-educated district blue in November.
Sources say that Spartz was unlikely to survive a 2020 primary to her State Senate seat and, based on that, her attempt “to move up to Congress might [have been] a better strategic situation.” As Hoosiers know, this wouldn’t be the first time Spartz has made a move to benefit herself, politically or economically. In this election, she’ll have to face her record of using her political position for familial revenge and questions about her mysterious business dealings. Her backing from dark-money group Club for Growth also means that she’ll forced to answer for their policies that threaten Hoosiers’ health care, Medicare, and Social Security.
In contrast, as a young single mother, Christina Hale lived the difficult choice many Hoosier families face between affording their health care and putting food on the table. She’s taken that awareness and made a career of helping those in need while working at a non-profit. In the Indiana General Assembly, Christina built a proven record as a problem-solver, willing to work with anyone if it meant delivering for Hoosier families on issues like job training, sexual assault prevention, and economic development. That’s how she was able to pass 60 bills, all with bipartisan support, and she’ll bring that same Hoosier commonsense attitude to Washington.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
HEADLINE: Lawmaker [Spartz] wants to deregulate wetlands. Her family once was cited for bulldozing them. [Indianapolis Star, 02/17/20]
“Asked in an interview about her modest housing in comparison to the gargantuan loan she gave her own campaign, Spartz became defensive… IMPORTANTVILLE TAKE: Which is it? Spartz is a successful businesswoman whose companies have raked in tens of millions? Or her companies have reported zero income? Who were her clients at ISBC? From which account or asset did she liquidate money to cover her field-leading loan?” [Importantville, 05/08/20]
Spartz’s “personal style and conservatism could jeopardize the GOP’s hold on the seat in the general election.” [Inside Elections, 02/07/20]
“According to local GOP sources, Spartz was unlikely to survive a 2020 primary, so attempting to move up to Congress might be a better strategic calculation.” [Inside Elections, 02/07/20]
“Hale could stand to benefit if the GOP nominates someone outside the mainstream such as Spartz or Beckwith.” [Inside Elections, 02/07/20]
“[W]ithout a Republican incumbent in the race, Democrats are even more optimistic that the political leanings of 5th District voters, coupled with changing demographics in the area, will be enough to take control of the seat. In his 2018 race for the U.S. Senate, Democrat Joe Donnelly won the district despite losing his reelection bid, and in 2019, Democrats won all the northern Marion County seats on the Indianapolis City-County Council.” [Indianapolis Business Journal, 05/08/20]
“While Democrat Christina Hale was able to lead fundraising efforts for both parties for the third consecutive quarter, raising $332,413, none of the Republican candidates was able to crack $100,000 in contributions for the quarter. She leads all candidates in cash on hand.” [IndyStar, 04/16/20]
Victoria Spartz: Looking Out For Herself And Her Fellow Millionaires, Not Hoosiers
TOO BUSY ENRICHING HERSELF
Victoria Spartz has a documented history of concealing conflicts of interest, especially when it means she stands to personally profit. Last year, Spartz introduced legislation that would remove state oversight of certain wetlands near regulated drains, despite having a “complicated history with [the subject which] she did not disclose” as her bill moved through the legislature. The complicated history? Her family had once tangled with these regulations while planning a multi-million-dollar development in Noblesville, eventually losing the land in a foreclosure settlement. Ethics and public policy experts decried Spartz’s move, saying she should have disclosed the conflict and that the entire situation “just smells funny.”
That’s just one of Spartz’s “string of curiosities looming in the background” of her campaign. Recent reports call into question how Spartz made her wealth and the nature of her business dealings. During one local interview, Spartz even declined to “discuss whether she owned other property [than a trailer park], or even disclose how many businesses she owned. She also declined to talk about her specific business projects” – calling into question whether Spartz is attempting to hide the nature of her business dealings. Furthermore, Spartz “does not list a single bank account on her personal financial disclosure, meaning she is either unbanked or didn’t comply with disclosure rules.”
And despite railing against government subsidies as part of her congressional platform, Spartz has taken those same subsidies when it benefits her. From 2014 to 2019, Spartz took $182,267 in federal agriculture subsidies for her soybean business and her family “has raked in $710,000 in agriculture subsidies from 1995 to 2019, according to public records.”
We agree, that “just smells funny.”
BAD FOR HOOSIER SENIORS, BAD FOR HOOSIER HEALTH CARE
Endorsed by the Club for Growth, Victoria Spartz has received the benefit of their spending, with one Republican operative stating “they’ve bought the race” for her – spending over $380,000 in the primary on her behalf. But this dark money group’s agenda which, presumably Spartz agrees with since they’re funding her campaign, includes privatizing Social Security, which experts say is really a plan to “dismantle” the vital program. Spartz has also called for cuts to welfare reform, which experts say would threaten Hoosiers’ health care and programs like Social Security and Medicare.
Spartz also opposes key pieces of the Affordable Care Act that make health care more affordable for Hoosiers, has advocated for the insurance industry to hold even more power over the American health care, in a recent TV ad, proudly stated that she “fought Obamacare.” That might be a convenient talking point for Spartz when she’s avoiding coming clean on her mysterious history, but if Spartz had her way and our health care system were repealed, the 329,300 Hoosiers in the 5th District who have pre-existing conditions would be at risk of losing their care or being charged more, simply because of a condition like asthma, cancer, or diabetes, and 54,000 Hoosiers in the District would lose their coverage.
Christina Hale knows firsthand the struggles many Hoosier families face when it comes to affording health care. As a single mother raising her son, Christina was able to provide health insurance for him, but she didn’t always have it herself and she understands the fear of one sore throat or broken bone being the reason for not being able to put food on the table or make a car payment. In Congress, she’ll fight to make sure every Hoosier has access to quality, affordable care.
PATH TO VICTORY
This majority suburban, highly educated district immediately came into focus in the battlefield when current Congresswoman Susan Brooks retired. But Brooks’ retirement is part of a larger shift: The results from last November’s municipal elections further demonstrate that the district is trending blue. Democrats flipped four City-County Council seats in Marion County, which includes Indianapolis, and gained control of every City-County Council seat that is in the district. Additionally, the Democrats won upset victories in the cities of Carmel and Fishers (both in Hamilton County) – the first time Democrats have held council seats in either city. As a reminder, Donnelly won the 5th district in 2018 with 50.3% of the major party vote.
Christina Hale’s record of working across aisle to solve problems that impact Hoosiers’ everyday lives fits this Democratic-trending district. Additionally, she begins the general election with a significant 3-to-1 cash-on-hand advantage over Spartz.