Indiana Senate Republican Marlin Stutzman of Howe says he will remain in the race to become the Republican challenger to U.S. Senator Evan Bayh, despite an announcement from former senator turned lobbyist Dan Coats that he intends to run as well.
Stutzman told the statehouse press corps he has the needed signatures to run in the Republican Primary in hopes of challenging incumbent Democrat Evan Bayh. And he adds he doesn’t plan on stepping aside for anything, including former U.S. senator Dan Coats.
Stutzman then went on the offensive, attacking Coats by saying he needs to answer questions about his lobbying relationships with several Chinese companies, as well as Harvest National Resources, a Texas oil and gas company partnered with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.
Stutzman also questioned whether Coats is still in touch with Hoosiers because he lives in Virginia, has said he wants to retire in North Carolina and isn’t a resident of Indiana.
Representatives for Coats were not immediately available for comment.
Candidates have until Tuesday to gather enough signatures and file the necessary paperwork. There are currently five Republicans vying to challenge Bayh’s senate seat.