Chesterton Tribune                                                                                   Adv.

Ex-Ind Sen. Coats may sell home in North Carolina

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — Former Republican Sen. Dan Coats says he may sell his family’s second home in North Carolina while preparing to challenge Democratic Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana in November.

Coats’ statement Friday in an e-mail to The Journal Gazette in Fort Wayne came after the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee released footage of Coats in 2008 saying he planned to move from Virginia to North Carolina after retiring.

“We do have a second home in North Carolina,” he said in an e-mail, “and had plans to spend more time there after retiring. Obviously, I now have no plans to retire, so it’s likely we will be selling our North Carolina second home.”

The Associated Press left a message Saturday seeking comment at an office for Coats, who said Wednesday he was preparing to challenge Bayh.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee distributed documents showing Coats and his wife bought a $1.8 million house in Wilmington, N.C., in 2006. The footage was incorporated into an ad by the committee that seeks to derail his candidacy by questioning his intentions about living in Indiana.

“Coats has spent way too much time inside the Beltway for Hoosiers to ever trust him again,” committee spokeswoman Deirdre Murphy said in a statement.

Coats, who retains strong name recognition even though he’s not an Indiana resident now, would bring a high profile to the race, where Republicans believe the two-term incumbent may be vulnerable. Coats is a conservative Republican, while Bayh is a moderate Democrat who toyed with running for president in 2008.

Coats was a senator for 10 years before deciding in 1998 against seeking re-election, avoiding a race with then-Gov. Bayh. Since then, he has served as ambassador to Germany under former President George W. Bush and worked as a lobbyist in Washington for such financial companies as Credit Suisse and Bank of America.

At least four other Republicans have said they will seek the nomination in the May 4 primary, and Coats is in a race to secure the necessary signatures in the next few weeks to qualify for the ballot.

Though Coats is now a resident of Virginia, the Constitution merely requires that he be an “inhabitant” of Indiana when elected.


Posted 2/8/2010




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