Hoosiers for Conservative Senate, an umbrella organization for tea party groups in Indiana that want to defeat Lugar, is hoping to choose a candidate that it can rally around. Mourdock said he would welcome their support, but it will take more than a tea party candidate to defeat Lugar.
“What’s more important to me than their endorsement is the fact that when I do a parade in Warsaw, Ind., 20 people show up and they’re willing to wear my T-shirt,” he said, adding that he hopes the 2,500 volunteers who helped with his re-election campaign for state treasurer in 2010 would pitch in again.
Mourdock said he respects Lugar but disagrees with his votes for the two newest Supreme Court justices, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, and his efforts helping President Barack Obama pass the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty. He said he didn’t think many other Republicans, including oft-mentioned state Sen. Mike Delph, would ultimately decide to run for the Senate.
Mourdock, who lives north of Evansville, previously lost bids for Congress in 1990 and 1992. Both times he got 45 percent of the vote against then-Rep. Frank McCloskey (D). Mourdock then served two terms as a Vanderburgh County commissioner from 1994 to 2002. He was elected state treasurer with 52 percent of the vote in 2006 and re-elected with 62 percent of the vote in 2010, getting more than 1 million votes and leading the Republican ticket.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., carries a musket on stage as he speaks during the American Conservative Union's Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at National Harbor, Md., on Thursday March 6, 2014.