For Mourdock to secure a victory, he’ll need heavy turnout in rural areas to offset Lugar’s perceived strength near Indianapolis and other cities, save Evansville, Mourdock’s hometown.
But an internal Mourdock campaign memo obtained by POLITICO shows that the campaign will be watching the margins closely in Hamilton and Marion counties, the two most populous counties in the Indianapolis metro area.
If Mourdock can keep those Lugar-friendly counties to within 10 percentage points, “the race should be over,” the Mourdock memo read. On the flip side, “If southern counties begin coming in with tight margins, Mourdock could be in trouble,” it added.
But Mourdock predicted the county-by-county map would look very favorable for him after the polls close Tuesday night.
“We’re going to be shocking people how many of those counties we’re going to win tomorrow and both large counties, small counties, urban counties, rural counties,” he said.In the closing days of the campaign, Sen. Lugar has refused to say whether he would support Mourdock if he wins and has even said he doesn't believe Mourdock is qualified for the job. Mourdock, by contrast, has been far more conciliatory in his comments in the closing days than the so-called "Statesman":
In a speech to supporters before election day, Mourdock choked up at the thought of the 3,000 volunteers who would trek out to 1,300 targeted precincts on behalf of him Tuesday.
“To see it come to fruition is so gratifying,” he said, as his voice quivered inside the small church.
Then Mourdock turned to a group of Cub Scouts in the front row to offer them a lesson — and an olive branch to his opponent.
“Remember that while Mr. Lugar and I have been campaigning very vigorously, I have never once — nor will I ever — think of Dick Lugar as my enemy. He’s not. He’s simply an opponent. Politics shouldn’t be that mean-spirited and about enemies. It’s about ideas,” the tea party-backed candidate said, prompting silent nods from the adults in the pews.
He then told the Scouts Lugar is an “honorable” role model “because he’s done remarkable things with his life.”
On the verge toppling a pillar of Indiana politics, Mourdock allowed himself for a moment to look ahead — and showed he’s grappling with how life, in all likelihood, is about to change.
“There’s a part of this that I don’t like and that is I’m a very private person. And that part of my life … is going to change forever. But I’m doing this because I believe it’s a mission,” Mourdock said, as his eyes welled up again.