Photo: McConnell Center (Flickr)
Senator Richard Lugar‘s challenger in the May 8 Republican primary is challenging the Indiana senator on another front. Richard Mourdock says he is calling on Lugar to establish an Indiana residence before the primary.
Mourdock presented documents Wednesday that he says show Lugar has not lived in Indiana since 1977. He says Lugar has admitted to his claim. Mourdock says he is making Lugar‘s residency an issue before Democrats latched onto it, which he says they will if Lugar wins the May primary.
“This is going to be a hotly contested race,” Mourdock says. “Then why would Republicans nominate someone who could ostensibly win the election but lose the seat on constitutional qualifications.”
Mourdock says it is not an issue of where or how Lugar votes. Mourdock says it is about constitutional qualifications for office. Those qualifications say Senate candidates must be 30 years old and inhabit the state that they represent. Mourdock says Lugar sold his home at 3200 Highwoods Court in July 1977 and moved to Mclean, Virginia, the same month.
Mourdock says Lugar admitted to CNN that he has continued to vote from the Highwoods Court address in Indiana since 1978. Mourdock says he is not taking the issue to court but wants Lugar to address it before it becomes a target for Democrats who will ultimately try to gain control in Congress.
Lugar‘s campaign political director, David Willkie, says Mourdock is re-hashing an old issue.
“This issue has been addressed by two attorneys general here in Indiana and upheld by a third,” he says. “Dick Lugar and Mrs. Lugar are legal residents of Indiana who pay Indiana state taxes and have Indiana driver’s licenses.”
Willkie says they use the 3200 Highwoods Court address legally since state law allows someone in public service to the state or nation to keep the last place of residency.