Senator From Indiana Ineligible To Vote In Indiana

An Indiana Election Board has ruled that Richard Lugar, who has served Indiana in the Senate since 1977, is ineligible to vote in Indiana:

The [Marion County] Election Board has voted 2-1 along party lines to find Sen. Richard Lugar, a Republican, and his wife ineligible to vote in their former home precinct. The two Democrats found that the Lugars abandoned that residence and no longer reside there. However, according to Election Board attorneys, there may be an easy fix — the Lugars could submit new voter registrations that are based on a physical address in the county with which they currently have a connection. That could be a family member’s home or, possibly, the Lugar family farm. There is no house on that farm but it might satisfy the requirement.

The GOP board member, Patrick J. Dietrick, said after today’s vote that the other members “utterly failed to consider the circumstances of this alleged violation of election law.” Today Clerk Beth White’s motion said there was no evidence that the Lugars knowingly violated residency requirements in voting previously in their Wayne Township precinct.

This is a slightly different from the issue that James Joyner touched on in his post last month regarding the question of whether or not Lugar is eligible to represent Indiana at all. That issue was resolved at the end of February when the Indiana Election Commission unanimously dismissed a petition filed by several Tea Party groups to get Lugar knocked off the ballot. While the two claims are based on  essentially the same facts, they involve different provisions of the law.

In any case, this appears to be an issue that Lugar can resolve rather easily either be re-registering in another location, or appealing the Board’s decision.

FILED UNDER: 2012 Election, US Politics, , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Neil Hudelson says:

    Major optic victory for the Richard Mourdock campaign.

  2. legion says:

    or appealing the Boar’s decision.

    Would that be a boar on the Lugar family farm? You’d think he’d be a more reliable vote for someone who keeps delivering pork to the state…

  3. Doug Deal says:


    He’s tired of them living high on the hog in Washington.

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    In any case, this appears to be an issue that Lugar can resolve rather easily either be re-registering in another location, or appealing the Board’s decision.

    And yet, somehow or other, Doug in his lawyerly cloaks, misses the complete ludicrousness of this situation.

    Stupid is, as stupid does. Even Forrest Gump got that much.

  5. Buzz Buzz says:

    It’s an outrageous violation of civil rights to require all voters to show a valid ID at the polls!

    But it’s completely acceptable business as usual when two partisan Democrats on a three-person panel arbitrarily decide that a prominent Republican shouldn’t be allowed to vote at all.

    Keep Fluking those chickens, Democrats.

  6. superdestroyer says:

    Lugar was an idiot who is showing that he has been in DC too long and has gone native.

    Why didn’t Lugar maintain a home in Indiana? How many days a year is Lugar physically present in Indiana. How many hoosiers are on Lugar’s staff? Did Lugar’s children attend college in Indiana or in Virginia where he lives?

  7. superdestroyer says:

    I think that reps and Senators should not be able to collect their pension unless they spend more than half of the time in the state or district that they represented.

    Senators and reps to leave office to stayin DC or move to NYC should not be eligible for a pension that they earned for representing a particular state or district.

  8. Some people just never know when to step aside and retire. Lugar is one of them. Voters are tired of seeing his face. New blood is sorely needed!