INDIANAPOLIS — Republican Dan Coats will return to the U.S. Senate from Indiana after leaving the chamber a decade ago to work as a lobbyist.
Coats defeated Democratic U.S. Rep. Brad Ellsworth and Libertarian Rebecca Sink-Burris in the race to succeed Democrat Evan Bayh. The GOP had counted on a Coats victory to help the party win the 10 seats it needs to gain control of the Senate.
Coats left the Senate in 1999, but decided to run again this year because he said he was unhappy with the way Democrats were running the country.
He outspent Ellsworth and had tried to cast the Democrat as a rubber stamp for liberals in Washington. Ellsworth portrayed Coats as a wealthy Beltway insider who didn't represent Indiana values – an argument that apparently failed to resonate with voters.