Republican candidate for mayor of Indianapolis, Chuck Brewer, is taking a stronger tone against his opponent on the eve of the election in a race that's been noteworthy for its civil and friendly tenor.
Brewer has not begun the slinging mud and launching attack ads that have become commonplace in other political campaigns, but he’s been trying to paint a different picture of Democrat Joe Hogsett, the presumed favorite in this race.
After RTV 6 uncovered late this week that a mysterious Limited Liability Company with ties to local developers was formed just days before it wrote Hogsett a $50,000 check, Brewer called him out on it.
At a Saturday afternoon press conference, Brewer said the donation from Indy Project Venture LLC ran “counter” the message of transparency that Hogsett has been portraying.
“Something does not smell right with this,” Brewer said, calling Hogsett one of the “most connected” people in Indianapolis.
Voters deserve to know who is behind the donations to Hogsett, Brewer charged, saying his own “hands are clean.”
Hogsett has raised four times as much money as Brewer through this election, with many large donations going to the Democrat from developers and law firms. Nearly half of Brewer’s campaign fund was provided by outgoing Mayor Greg Ballard, the Republican that Brewer and Hogsett are vying to replace.
The press conference prompted Indy Project Venture to reveal itself. A statement from Jim Carlino read:
“Indy Project Venture LLC represents a group of local executives from Scannell Properties, a company that is based in Indianapolis with business operations throughout the United States and in Canada. No attempt was made to obscure this – in fact, the company was registered within our Indianapolis corporate office and is clearly affiliated with our company.
Indianapolis is our home, and as business owners here, we are very concerned about the rising tide of violent crime and its harmful impact on businesses in every part of the city. Given these concerns, we proudly support Joe and believe in his positive vision for a safer Indianapolis.”
RTV 6 reported the LLC was created through a New York company that handles the formation of LLCs and registered to a home on the south side of Indianapolis.
Thomas Cook, Hogsett’s campaign manager, called Brewer’s remarks a “desperate, baseless attack.”
In an interview, Cook would not speculate as to why, if the partners at Scannell Properties were such good friends of Hogsett and open supporters, they used an LLC to make a donation instead of doing so as individual donors.