The campaign to re-elect U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar, R-In., released a new ad Sunday featuring Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, who defends the longtime incumbent as the Republican Party’s best choice to win in the fall.
In a 30-second spot, Daniels tells Indiana voters why he supports Lugar and characterizes attacks against he six-term Senator as misleading. Lugar faces a tough GOP primary challenger in state Treasurer Richard Mourdock, who is affiliated with the Tea Party.
“The truth can take a beating in campaign time and this year it’s Dick Lugar on the receiving end. It’s funny in a way, these folks from elsewhere, here telling us who’s a real Hoosier,” says Daniels. “The way he votes, the way he lives, I can’t think of anyone so reflective of the thinking, principles, and ideals of our state.”
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Interestingly, Daniels gives Lugar a backhand compliment at the end of the the ad while maintaining a stiff arm from the Senator’s record, which has come under attack from conservative activists and groups.
The governor says he isn’t backing “Lugar for what he’s done, but for what he can do” as if to say he doesn’t necessarily approve of the Senator’s voting record. Daniels then pivots to make a strategic argument, saying what Lugar does is give the GOP a “better chance to win” in the general election.