Questions Raised About Lugar's Residency

Questions Raised About Lugar's Residency

By Erin McPike - February 18, 2011

Indiana Republican Sen. Richard Lugar has been preparing for an intra-party challenge since he was first elected, but recently, questions have popped up about his residency and commitment to Indiana.

Asked if Lugar lived in a hotel when he returned to Indiana, Lugar senior adviser Mark Helmke said, "That's correct."

Lugar owns a farm in the Hoosier State that he's been tending for decades. His siblings own parts of the farm, but he still works on it once a month with his son, even though he doesn't live there.

As for the living conditions on the farm, Helmke joked, "The place is pretty rustic."

Asked how Lugar's team would respond if challenged about his residency, Helmke shot back, "We'll be happy to talk about the farm."

"It's not an issue. They can try to make it an issue. We'll be happy to talk about the farm and what it means to him," Helmke said.

Lugar is awaiting a tough primary challenge from state Treasurer Richard Mourdock, but he has been dogged in defense of his record. In fact, he told the tea party to "get real" earlier this year.

While the tea party might be looking to take down Lugar, those close to Mourdock are more concerned with Lugar's more recent past as a Beltway insider, and Mourdock claims to be a little bit outside the tea party mantle.

Erin McPike is a national political reporter for RealClearPolitics. She can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @ErinMcPike.

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