Political Notebook

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Republicans have a fun victory party

Wednesday’s Allen County Republican luncheon might have included Richard Mourdock, but the GOP Senate nominee’s speech wasn’t the only interesting event. Here are few of the other highlights:

•County Councilman Robert Armstrong celebrated his victory by attacking the press for saying he is too quiet. “If you keep your mouth shut and your ears open, you’ll get things accomplished.”

•Roy Buskirk summed up the mood by saying “(Republicans) won every race statewide in which they fielded a candidate.” Of course, he deadpanned, that was because this was a primary election.

•Rep. Phyllis Pond, R-New Haven, offered $5 to anyone who could find one of her yard signs still standing. Fort Wayne Republican Rep. Bob Morris, who received one of the loudest ovations at the event, told Pond he picked up six, so she owed him $30.

•The capper came when Chairman Steve Shine introduced the party’s coroner nominee, Craig Nelson. Shine said to the crowd, “I hope this is one of the few times you have to see him.”

Nelson replied, “I’d be seeing you, you wouldn’t be seeing me.”

Long to be honored

The Indiana Wildlife Federation is presenting Senate President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne, with the Legislative Conservationist of the Year award.

The presentation will take place at 11 a.m. Monday in Long’s office in the Fort Wayne Pizza Hut headquarters.

The criterion for the award is outstanding effort on legislative matters concerning Indiana’s natural resources and environment.

Barbara Simpson, executive director of the federation, said Long played a pivotal role in blocking legislation earlier this year that would have legalized existing fenced-hunting preserves and allowed others to open.

“It got legs and passed the House, but Sen. Long said it was a bad bill and did not let it move forward,” she said.

The federation, and several other conservation groups, opposes these canned hunts because they violate the doctrine of fair chase since the animals can’t escape the enclosure.

Stretching it

The Indiana Democratic Party went to work immediately Wednesday to brand GOP U.S. Senate nominee Richard Mourdock as an extremist tea party guy.

Tucked in a long news release about “how not to roll out a general election campaign,” the Democrats chastised Mourdock for campaigning with “far-right legislator” Rep. Bob Morris, R-Fort Wayne.

According to the Democratic release, in his first day of general election campaigning, Mourdock “hit the trail with State Legislator Bob Morris, the Indiana legislator who made national news for calling the Girl Scouts a ‘radicalized organization’ that ‘sexualizes’ young girls and promotes homosexuality. Really.”

Yes, Mourdock attended Wednesday’s traditional Allen County GOP lunch celebration at headquarters, and Morris was in attendance.

As was virtually every other Republican elected Allen County official.

And Mourdock had very little contact with Morris, save for possibly a handshake.

They certainly didn’t jump onstage or give a speech together.

To reach Political Notebook by email, contact Benjamin Lanka at blanka@jg.net or Niki Kelly at nkelly@jg.net. An expanded Political Notebook can also be found as a daily blog at www.journalgazette.net/politicalnotebook.