Huffpost Politics

Richard Lugar, Richard Mourdock Square Off In Indiana GOP Primary Debate

Posted: Updated:
LUGAR MOURDOCK DEBATE
ap

Sen. Richard Lugar and State Treasurer Richard Mourdock faced off on Wednesday in the first and only GOP primary debate in the Indiana Senate race, ahead of the May 8 primary.

During the hour-long debate, both candidates maintained a strong level of respect for the other, the Indianapolis Star reports.

Both candidates pushed for expanding domestic oil exploration, which they argued would lower gas prices, and for the need to reduce federal regulations and scale back the size of government. When an opportunity arose for Mourdock to slam Lugar for not having lived in Indiana since 1977, the Star reports, Mourdock declined to go on the attack.

The race for the Indiana Senate seat has divided conservative groups that are usually aligned with each other, according to WIBC News. FreedomWorks and the Club for Growth are two of Mourdock’s biggest backers. Lugar, on the other hand, has obtained endorsements from the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, Indiana Manufacturers Association and the National Federation of Independent Business.

The divide has to do with Lugar's voting record. While the Chamber has ranked Lugar's voting record as the best in the Senate and the NFIB has given him a perfect score 17 years in a row, Club for Growth ranks him 29th out of 47 Senate Republicans.

According to some polls Lugar is currently leading Mourdock by single digits.

10 more election stories from beyond the presidential field:

Dennis Kucinich Won't Rule Out Run For House Seat In Washington State [King5.com]

Despite A New Ad Praising Fenway, Scott Brown Pushed In 2001 To Move Red Sox To Foxborough [The Boston Globe]

Scott Walker Aid Blasts Falk Over D.C. Fundraiser: [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]

Disney World Gives Campaign Committee $10,000, Gets $2.2 Million: [Orlando Sentinel]

Former State Rep. Wayne Pettigrew Files For Congress [The Oklahoman]

Domingo Garcia's Congressional Campaign May Upend State Rep. Lon Burnam's Bid For Re-Election [The Texas Tribune]

4 Candidates Fail To Qualify For Recall Ballot [Green Bay Press Gazette]

Top Dollar GOP Candidates Go Negative In U.S. Senate Race [Philadelphia Daily News]

Candidate Raises Ire In 6th District [Queens Tribune]

New Mexico Supreme Court May Boot Republican State Rep From Ballot [New Mexico Watchdog]