Club for Growth Leader Suggests Lugar Abandon Re-Election Bid

Posted April 19, 2011 at 4:02pm

Club for Growth President Chris Chocola gave six-term Sen. Dick Lugar (R-Ind.) some unsolicited advice Tuesday: Retire.

Chocola, a former Congressman from Indiana who served in the House from 2003 to 2007, told ABC’s “Top Line” that his fiscally conservative organization is considering getting involved in Lugar’s 2012 re-election campaign in the Hoosier State. The club has already met with Lugar’s primary opponent, state Treasurer Richard Mourdock (R).

“We are looking at that race very closely,” Chocola said. “We do have some concerns about Sen. Lugar and his service. We think it would probably be best if he would retire at this point. So we haven’t made any decisions at this point, but we are looking at it very closely, and it is one of the races that is very high on our radar.”

Lugar’s campaign politely declined Chocola’s suggestion.

“Sen. Lugar has been an effective conservative and is going to be mounting a vigorous campaign,” campaign spokesman David Willkie said.

Chocola lost re-election in 2006 to Rep. Joe Donnelly (D), who is seriously looking at running for Lugar’s seat.

Kyle Trygstad contributed to this report.