1984 Indiana gubernatorial election

← 1980 November 6, 1984 (1984-11-06) 1988 →
Robert D. Orr.jpg
Nominee Robert D. Orr Wayne Townsend
Party Republican Democratic
Running mate John Mutz Ann DeLaney
Popular vote 1,146,497 1,036,922
Percentage 52.2% 47.2%

1984 Indiana gubernatorial election results map by county.svg
County results
Orr:      50–60%      60–70%
Townsend:      40–50%      50–60%      60–70%

Governor before election

Robert D. Orr

Elected Governor

Robert D. Orr

The 1984 Indiana gubernatorial election was held on November 6, 1984 in all 92 counties of Indiana. Robert D. Orr, the state's incumbent Republican governor, who defeated former State Treasurer John Snyder for the nomination, was comfortably reelected to a second term, defeating State Senator Wayne Townsend and two minor party challengers in the general election.[1] His victory marked the fifth consecutive victory for the Republican Party in Indiana gubernatorial elections, and the last time Republicans would win the governorship in the 20th century.

Despite losing the election, Townsend, who defeated former United States Attorney Virginia Dill McCarty for the nomination, received 195,351 more votes than the Democratic nominee for president, Walter Mondale, who won less than 38% of the vote in Indiana and was handily defeated by Ronald Reagan in the presidential election of 1984.[2] Townsend's running mate, former Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Ann DeLaney, was the first woman ever to run for Lieutenant Governor of Indiana in the history of the state.[3][4]

As of 2022, this was the most recent Indiana gubernatorial election in which both major party candidates are now deceased.[original research?]


Indiana gubernatorial election, 1984[5]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Robert D. Orr (incumbent) 1,146,497 52.16
Democratic Wayne Townsend 1,036,922 47.18
American Rockland Snyder 7,455 0.34
Libertarian James A. Ridenour 7,114 0.32


  1. ^ Herbers, John (November 7, 1984). "The 1984 Elections: More Than the Presidency at Stake; G.o.p. Gains Marginal in Governors' Contests" – via NYTimes.com.
  2. ^ "1984 Presidential General Election Results - Indiana".
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-09-16. Retrieved 2016-08-29.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ King, Mason. "LEADING QUESTIONS: Pugnacious DeLaney seeks simpler life". Indianapolis Business Journal.
  5. ^ "Our Campaigns - IN Governor Race - Nov 06, 1984". www.ourcampaigns.com.