Political Notebook

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Civil discourse advocacy group adds Lugar

The National Institute for Civil Discourse has announced that Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., has joined its advisory board.

“The American people want constructive dialogue from their leaders and recognize the dangers to American unity that are inherent in unrelenting partisanship,” Lugar said in a statement about his selection.

A senator since 1977, Lugar leaves office this year after his loss to state Treasurer Richard Mourdock in the May 8 Republican primary election. Joining him on the NICD advisory board is retiring Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine.

Lugar and Snowe “have dedicated their careers to working across the aisle to reach bipartisan solutions to our nation’s problems,” Tom Daschle, honorary co-chairman of the NICD advisory board and a former Senate majority leader from South Dakota, said in a statement.

The non-partisan institute formed at the University of Arizona shortly after the Jan. 8, 2011, shooting rampage in Tucson. Jared Lee Loughner pleaded guilty in August and was been sentenced to life in prison for killing six people and wounding 13, including his intended target, then-Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz.

The honorary co-chairmen of the NICD advisory board are former presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Board members include Giffords; Madeleine Albright and Colin Powell, former secretaries of state; former Wyoming senator Alan Simpson; ex-New Mexico governor Bill Richardson; and journalists Katie Couric of ABC News, Scott Simon of National Public Radio and Greta Van Susteren of Fox News.

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