Last month, it appeared that Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., had caught a break when auto dealer Bob Thomas said he was preparing to enter the GOP Senate race, thus raising the possibility of the anti-Lugar vote being split between 2010 House candidate and state Treasurer Richard Mourdock. But it turns out he's not running after all.
"We have looked at this thing from every which way. It doesn't make sense to get in. We don't see a chance to win. I don't want to be a second candidate against an incumbent," Thomas told Howey Politics Indiana on Monday.
It's clearly a good day for Mourdock, whose fundraising woes have given him enough to worry about in the campaign without the threat of another challenger.
There doesn't appear to be anyone else looming on the horizon as a possible high impact candidate in the GOP race. And with a filing deadline that opens on Jan. 11 and closes in early February, the clock is ticking for anyone new who wants to jump in the mix and collect the 500 signatures from each congressional district that are required to get on the ballot.
But don't wait around for Thomas to endorse Mourdock (not that it would matter all that much). He took a shot the Lugar challenger on his way out of the Senate discussion, telling Howey Politics, "I cannot get excited at all about Richard Mourdock. Why elect someone to higher office when he's not doing a very good job in the one he's in right now?"