The fourth target of the residency question is now Republican gubernatorial candidate Mike Pence.
But just as trying to stretch a double into a triple is usually asking for an out, stretching the rare triple into an inside-the-park home run is almost unheard of. One day after the primary earlier this month, Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Gregg did just that, criticizing Pence for raising his family in Virginia since his election to Congress in 2001.
When asked about the importance of maintaining a residence in Indiana during a recent meeting with newspaper editors in Indianapolis, Pence paused before answering the question . . .
"Well, I'm a lifelong Hoosier. I was born and raised in the state and everyone in my family is a Hoosier, except our son: he's a Boilermaker," Pence said with a pinch of snark, referencing his son's attendance at Purdue University. Then he laid down a clean, reasonable response: He owns two homes, one in Indiana and one in Virginia. He says he chose to raise his family in Virginia so they could stick together.I would add that Pence has been far more visible within the state during his tenure in Congress than Lugar, even though he chose to move his family out to Washington to live. As Rex Early is fond of saying, "that dog won't hunt."
"That just shows when you're out in Virginia, you're out of touch with Indiana. That's my point," Gregg said. "It's a question of not where one legally resides, it's a question of whether or not they are in touch with what is going on in Indiana."
Of course, that's a highly subjective assessment. When asked if the same criticism applied to other members of Congress — like Democratic Reps. Andre Carson, Pete Visclosky and Joe Donnelly, who like Pence is running for statewide office — Gregg shied away from the critique, arguing it was Republicans who banged that drum . . .