Richard Lugar Didn't Just Deserve To Go
Since his election to the Senate in 1976, Lugar had cut a profile as a moderate Republican: He had supported the ethanol mandate, backed the Brady Bill, and opposed the Iraq surge. In previous cycles, Republicans had forgiven Lugar his ideological transgressions, but in recent years, he had become more brazen. Not only did Lugar support the DREAM Act; he cosponsored it. Not only did he vote for New START, he spoke forcefully in its favor. True, Lugar wasn’t Arlen Specter — he opposed the stimulus and Obamacare — but his voting record was moderate enough to make him suspect.
And a combination of a poorly run campaign, a credible opponent, and a small, energized electorate sealed his fate.