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Primary Elections

Posted Sunday, April 29, 2012, at 1:13 PM

 

 

May 8 is Primary Day in Indiana this year. Hoosiers will be going to the poles to select their candidates for the fall election.

At the time of our nation's founding, the concept of primary elections was never considered. Party politics was never considered.

George Washington was selected to be President by the constitutional delegates to lead us in the first four years of our new government. Four years later, the candidate with the most electoral votes became President (George Washington) and the candidate with the second most electoral votes became Vice President (John Adams).

By the time Washington's second term came to an end, party politics already dominated the political scene. John Adams, our second President, was a Federalist. His Vice President, Thomas Jefferson, was a Democratic Republican. The divide was an echo of the dispute between the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists. (Adams and Jefferson had true animosity for each other, the effects of which precipitated the 12th Amendment to the Constitution changing Presidential elections.)

The political parties determine whether they will have primaries or caucuses and when their candidate selection will occur.

While often under appreciated, and with little participation, the primaries are the most important elections we have. They determine who our candidates will be.

Four years ago, there was a battle to be the presidential candidate for both major political parties. While the Republican nomination was all but resolved by the time it was Indiana's time to vote, the contest between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton was still hotly contested. In Indiana, so long as you are willing to claim affiliation with a political party, you can vote in that party's primary. Four years ago declaring Democratic was the thing to do.

This year, the ballot to take is Republican.

While the nomination of the presidential candidates is now done, there is a contest to be Indiana's delegate to the U.S. Senate.

Until recently, Richard Lugar appeared to be Senator for Life. Any Republican who dared to challenge him would be banished to a political desert for not less than 40 years. Lugar was so secure in his seat that even the Democrats would have to talk someone into being a sacrificial lamb to prevent that slot on the ballot from going empty.

This year, there is a serious challenge to Senator Lugar. According to statewide poling, the race is neck and neck.

Richard Lugar left the mayoralty of Indianapolis and became Senator from Indiana in 1976. He has been in Washington ever since.

Personally, my motivation in this election does not come from Lugar's "F" rating from the National Rifle Association or his apparent willingness to put the interests of the United Nations above the interests of the U.S. Rather, I believe that there is no shortage of qualified and capable people who can serve their state or nation. I believe in term limits. I believe that our founders correctly believed citizens should leave their careers to serve their state and nation for a short while, then return to live under the laws they created.

It is time to invite Richard Lugar back home. It is time for him to live under the laws passed by the congress during his 36-year tenure. If you believe in term limits, you should strongly consider taking a Republican ballot on May 8 to cast your vote for Republican candidate for Senate.

Senator Lugar, I for one invite you to come back to your native land; this great Hoosier State. Senator Lugar, it is time for you to retire.


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If Lugar were to be re-elected that would put him in the running with Daniel Inouye, Frank Lautenberg and Daniel Akaka . He'd be 86 when this next terms up. Do we need that? Younger does not always mean wiser, but it's a good probability that someone younger would have a better chance of getting things across to fellow Senators. I do apologize for this and mean absolutely no disrespect, but when I saw Lugar at the YMCA several months back, I actually felt sorry for him. He appeared to me as if he had no idea why he was there. Does that smile ever come off? I mean, seriously, give the guy a break. Let him live out his life in retirement, even though he'll probably have to purchase a home in Indiana if he decides to retire here.

-- Posted by steve47834 on Sat, May 5, 2012, at 4:23 AM

Its a tough year to run as a 36 year incumbent, i have no doubt of that - but as a democrat, and even though i frequently disagree with his positions on some things, i think you have to respect Dick Lugar as one of the smartest, most ethical men that Indiana has ever sent to Washington. Ranking member of the Foreign Policy Committee is no small thing, either, though you try to spin it negatively, Charles - almost as illogical as the rest of your column (was that a bad history of primary elections or a bad endorsement for Mourdock, who you don't even call by name?) i'm not sure when Lugar "put the UN before the USA", but i do know that Lugar has a depth and sophistication of knowledge on everything from farm policy to indiana industries to the euro crisis or nuclear disarmament. The guy is a real class act. I hope Hoosiers think twice before pulling a ballot for some new, untested Tea Party candidate when we already have Dick Lugar, who has to be one of the best senators our state has ever had.

-- Posted by NorvalJrJr on Fri, May 4, 2012, at 10:45 PM


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