INDIANAPOLIS | Democrat Joe Hogsett was elected mayor of Indianapolis on Tuesday, ending the capital city's distinction as the second-largest U.S. municipality led by a Republican.
The former Indiana secretary of state (1989-95) and U.S. attorney (2010-14) defeated Republican sandwich shop owner Chuck Brewer to succeed Mayor Greg Ballard, who declined to run for a third term.
Hogsett inherits a city with a booming downtown business, residential and tourist scene. But outside the central district, neighborhoods are struggling with high crime, poor schools and lackluster infrastructure.
Indianapolis even has outpaced Chicago for per capita homicides two years in a row, and with more than 100 slayings in Indianapolis already this year, that trend looks to continue.
The mayor-elect has declared reducing crime his top priority. He plans to hire more police, deploy them in neighborhood beats and provide summer jobs for at-risk youths to improve public safety.
In addition, Hogsett has vowed to expand preschool options and encourage more city students to take advantage of state-supported college scholarships.
As a Democratic mayor of Indiana's most populous city, Hogsett also is poised to become a key voice opposing the policies of Republican Gov. Mike Pence and the Republican-controlled General Assembly.