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Mike Sodrel


Mike Sodrel

Mike Sodrel
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Indiana's 9th district
In office
January 3, 2005 – January 3, 2007
Preceded by Baron Hill
Succeeded by Baron Hill
Personal details
Born (1945-12-17) December 17, 1945
Louisville, Kentucky
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Marquita Dean Sodrel
Residence New Albany, Indiana
Occupation Automotive executive, author
Religion Baptist

Michael E. "Mike" Sodrel (born December 17, 1945) served as the United States Representative from the Ninth Congressional district of Indiana, representing the Republican Party for one term from 2005 to 2007. Sodrel's seat in the U.S. House of Representatives was his first public office. Sodrel launched another run against incumbent Democratic Rep. Baron Hill in 2010 - his fifth straight run for Congress in the ninth district. However, Sodrel lost the Republican nomination to Bloomington attorney Todd Young.


  • Early life, education and career 1
  • U.S. House of Representatives 2
  • Political campaigns 3
    • 2006 3.1
    • 2008 3.2
    • 2010 3.3
  • Electoral history 4
  • Personal life 5
  • Works 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8

Early life, education and career

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Sodrel grew up across the Ohio River in New Albany, Indiana, where he now lives. He graduated New Albany High School (Indiana) in 1963. In 1967 he married Marquita Dean; they have two children and seven granddaughters. Sodrel attended Indiana University Southeast in New Albany, Indiana.

From 1966 to 1973 Sodrel served in the Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 151st Mechanized Infantry, formerly part of the 38th Infantry Division. He was honorably discharged with the rank of Staff Sergeant.

Since 1963 Sodrel has worked in one role or another at the family business Sodrel Truck Lines Inc. He founded The Free Enterprise System Inc. (a charter motor-coach/contract passenger-carrier) and Sodrel Logistics.

U.S. House of Representatives

Sodrel served on the Agriculture, Transportation and Infrastructure, Small Business and Science committees.

During his term, Sodrel expressed strong pro-life opinions and opposed partial-birth abortions and federal funding for elective abortions. He opposed additional environmental regulations. He has outspokenly supported the second-amendment right to bear arms. He has a 92 lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union,[1] and a 0 rating from the League of Conservation Voters.[2] He is in favor of permanently repealing the federal estate tax.

In 2006 Sodrel introduced a bill that would prevent federal courts from ruling on the content of speech in state legislatures. The proposal came as a response to a ruling by U.S. District Judge David Hamilton, the nephew of former Congressman Lee H. Hamilton, who had judged that official Indiana House proceedings could not begin with sectarian prayers that advanced any particular religion.[3]

Political campaigns

Sodrel has campaigned on a platform of creating and protecting jobs, lowering taxes and values He drives his own 18-wheeler on the campaign trail. He first ran for the House of Representatives in 2002, losing to incumbent Baron Hill, 51% to 46%. In the 2004 rematch, he defeated Hill by 1500 votes.


Sodrel faced Hill again in the 2006 general election. The Cook Political Report, an independent nonpartisan newsletter, rated the race as a toss-up.[4]

President Bill Clinton.

Sodrel ultimately lost his bid for re-election by a margin of 45% to 50%. The candidates raised equivalent funds in 2006.

Texas millionaire Bob J. Perry gave more than $5 million to the Economic Freedom Fund, a 527 group, which included Hill as one of its targets for removal. The group paid for automated "push poll" calls attacking Hill. These calls stopped after action by the Indiana Attorney General.[5]


In October 2007 Sodrel announced that he would run again in 2008 for the Congressional seat against Baron Hill, whom he defeated in 2004 but to whom he lost in 2002 and 2006.[6] In 2006 Cook rated the race as a toss-up for the duration of the race, but in 2008 the race moved between Likely D to Lean D on the Cook Political Report.[7] Sodrel's fund-raising was weak compared both to Hill and Sodrel's 2006 figures.

Hill defeated Sodrel in the election, 58% to 39%.[8]


On January 11, 2010 at an event in Jeffersonville, Indiana, Mike Sodrel announced that he would again seek the 2010 Republican nomination for the 9th District Congressional seat. He joined two other candidates in the field of Republican contenders: Bloomington attorney Todd Young (a native of Carmel, Indiana) and Columbus real-estate investor Travis Hankins. A poll published by the left-leaning weblog Firedoglake shows Sodrel leading Hill 49-41 in a head to head race.[9] However he lost the Republican nomination, coming in third place behind Travis Hankins and winner Todd Young.

Electoral history

Indiana's 9th congressional district: Results 2002–2006[10]
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
2002 Baron P. Hill 96,654 51% Mike Sodrel 87,169 46% Jeff Melton Green 2,745 2% Al Cox Libertarian 2,389 1%
2004 Baron P. Hill 140,772 49% Mike Sodrel 142,197 49% Al Cox Libertarian 4,541 2%
2006 Baron P. Hill 110,454 50% Mike Sodrel 100,469 46% D. Eric Schansberg Libertarian 9,893 4% *
2008 Baron P. Hill 181,254 58% Mike Sodrel 121,514 38% D. Eric Schansberg Libertarian 12,000 4%
Write-in and minor candidate notes: In 2006, Donald W. Mantooth received 33 votes.

Personal life

Sodrel has served on numerous charitable organization's board of directors, including the Remnant Trust and as a past regional council president of the Boy Scouts of America.


Sodrel is the author of an internet book, Citizen Sheep Government Shepherds.[11]


  1. ^ [6]
  2. ^ "2009 National Environmental Scorecard". Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  3. ^ [7]
  4. ^ [8]
  5. ^ [9]
  6. ^ [10]
  7. ^ "Rep. Baron Hill | The Cook Political Report". Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  8. ^ "Hill Defeats Sodrel".  
  9. ^ "IN-9: Baron Hill Trailing Mike Sodrel in Fifth Straight Match Up, 41% to 49% | Elections". 2010-01-21. Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  10. ^ "Election Statistics". Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives. Retrieved 2008-01-10. 
  11. ^ Sodrel releases first book, Chris Morris, Jefferson Evening News and Tribune, August 20, 2010

External links

  • Campaign Web site
United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Baron Hill
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Indiana's 9th congressional district

January 3, 2005 – January 3, 2007
Succeeded by
Baron Hill
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