A wealthy Indiana Republican is reportedly thinking about entering the primary to challenge Sen. Dick Lugar (R-Ind.).
Auto dealer Bob Thomas is making calls about a bid and intends to make a final decision after the Thanksgiving holiday, Howey Politics Indiana, a local politics newsletter, reported this week.
Lugar already faces a tough primary challenge from state Treasurer Richard Mourdock. A Thomas bid could boost the six-term Senator’s chances of winning re-election by splitting the anti-Lugar vote in the May GOP primary.
Mourdock initially garnered a great deal of attention and support when he kicked off his bid against Lugar, but the challenger’s campaign struggled with fundraising. Mourdock had only $292,000 in the bank at the end of September, while Lugar had $3.8 million.
If there’s one thing Thomas could bring to the race, it’s cash. Thomas dumped almost $600,000 of his own money into his failed primary challenge against then-Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.) last year. He came in second, trailing Souder by about 14 points, in a four-way primary.
After the primary, Souder resigned following his admission that he had an extramarital affair with a part-time staffer. Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R) succeeded Souder.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.