Lugar Ousted by Tea Party Challenger
But I thought the tea party was dead?
Indiana grassroots appears to have scored a major victory of the GOP establishment in tonight's hotly contested senate primary. Richard Mourdock, the State Treasurer heavily backed by various tea parties is the projected winner over career politician Dick Lugar in a historic upset.
If the establishment GOP thought that the grassroots movement was over, the movement sent a clear message not only to the Indiana GOP but also to Washington: Being a Republican isn't enough in this election.
Conservative grassroots realize that the house and senate races are perhaps more important than that of the presidency, for good reason: they see a Democrat with some socialist policies and a moderate Republican whose pledges haven't yet brought them confidence in his leadership. They see the need for a conservative, Constitutionally-obedient congress to either circumvent what a Democrat White House would throw their way, or keep a moderate White House from reaching across the aisle one too many times.
Live commentary below with vote percentages. All times eastern.
7:30: With 21% of the vote, Mourdock has a health 60% to Lugar's 40%
7:43: with 33% in Mourdock still holds strong, 60-40.
7:47: 50% reporting, 60-40.
8:00: AP calling it for Mourdock.
8:05: Indiana Public Media calls it for Mourdock.
8:08: CBS also calls it for Mourdock. The concession and victory speeches just mark the formality of declaring him the official winner at this point.