Charbonneau hangs on to state senate seat
By Christin Nance Lazerus firstname.lastname@example.org November 6, 2012 6:54PM
Dave Bartman/Post-Tribune Head and shoulders Ed Charbonneau for columnist mug on 03/16/04. Charbonneau_Ed-USS_04
Updated: December 8, 2012 6:22AM
State Sen. Ed Charbonneau, R-Valparaiso, edged out first-time candidate and Portage music teacher Deb Porter on Tuesday night in District 5.
With 95 percent of Porter County precincts reporting, Charbonneau led Porter 52 percent to 49 percent. The district covers southern and eastern Porter County and portions of LaPorte, Jasper, Starke, Pulaski, Marshall and St. Joseph counties.
Porter was critical of much of the education legislation that has become law in the past four years, from the private school voucher program to charter school expansion. She advocates lowering the mandatory school attendance age from 7 to 5 and funding preschool education.
Charbonneau, who has served since 2007, said he believed the education reforms are starting to bear fruit in terms of increasing test scores and rising graduation rates.
He said the General Assembly has passed many measures to make the state more attractive to businesses.
Porter said the state needs to do more to attract high-paying jobs with benefits, so parents can create a better future for their children.