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Eye on Indiana and Wisconsin; Update: Lugar defeated; Barrett to face Walker

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By Michelle Malkin  •  May 8, 2012 06:04 PM

I was in Indianapolis over the weekend for the Tea Party/Freedomworks rally for Richard Mourdock — and the energy and excitement were palpable. Tonight’s the night to retire three-decade entrenched incumbent Dick Lugar. Twitter’s been buzzing all day with reports from grass-roots activists taking the fight to the GOP old guard — not just at the Senate level, but all the way down the ballot.

Repeating again what I said in February:

The GOP needs just four seats to take control of the Senate. With inspired and inspiring free-market candidates like Dan Liljenquist, Richard Mourdock and Ted Cruz, 2012 bodes well for the tea party footprint on Capitol Hill. Remember: Entrenched incumbency is the disease. Fresh blood is the cure.

I love how Mourdock took Lugar’s whine about outside special interests and knocked the charge on its backside:

“To the charge that there is a special interest group that has been supporting us from outside the state, that’s true and the special interest group is called conservatives,” Mourdock said. “That’s why they came together behind this campaign. They recognize that it’s time to put a more conservative voice in the U.S. Senate.”

In Wisconsin, Democrats are picking their recall primary challenger against GOP Gop. Scott Walker. Latest updates here.

Reminder of my call to arms in March:

President Obama, the AFL-CIO, SEIU, AFSCME and left-wing operatives know that Wisconsin is Ground Zero in their battle against limited-government activists. Their demagogic propaganda war against Wisconsin GOP Rep. Paul Ryan, who is leading entitlement reform and budget discipline efforts in Washington, is of a piece with the campaign to overturn the popular elections that put Walker, Kleefisch and the GOP majority in place. If they can chill fiscal responsibility and free market-based reforms in Wisconsin, they can chill it everywhere. Will movement conservatives let them?

Donate:

Gov. Scott Walker

Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch

Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald

Sen. Van Wanggaard

Sen. Terry Moulton

Update (DP): Lugar, in the Senate since 1976, has been shown the door. But as Lugar reminded everybody tonight, he’s not finished yet:

“My public service is not concluded,” Lugar told supporters in Indianapolis. “I look forward to what can be achieved in the Senate in the next eight months despite a very difficult national election atmosphere.”

Lame ducks, like wounded animals, can be very dangerous. Gird your coins.

Lugar’s loss made a little history:

Among senators who had served at least six terms, only one had lost in a primary before Lugar: Kenneth McKeller, D-Tenn., who joined the Senate in 1917 and lost to Democratic primary challenger Al Gore, Sr. in 1952.

And of course Al Gore, Sr. was the father of the Goracle, who is the father of the modern global warming alarmism to which Lugar subscribes. So there’s our “six degrees of separation” for this evening’s entrenched incumbent trouncing. Actually, due to global warming, that separation has now risen to seven degrees.

Update (MM): Milwaukee’s Democrat mayor Tom Barrett beat out the Big Labor pick Kathleen Falk in the race to face GOP Gov. Scott Walker. It’s a do-over of the 2010 gubernatorial race. The MacIver Institute reports:

The Examiner’s Philip Klein sees good news in the turnout numbers:

With 80% of precincts reporting, Walker, running effectively unopposed in the Republican primary, has won 507,868 votes. Meanwhile, Barrett and Falk — the two main Democrats — combined for 475,283. Add all five Democratic candidates, and they still barely edged Walker, with 515,693. Given that next month’s recall election will hinge on voter enthusiasm, the fact that so many voters turned out to support Walker in a meaningless primary has to be seen as a positive sign for his campaign.

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