- Associated Press - Sunday, May 8, 2011

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Joe Donnelly, Indiana Democrat, will announce on Monday that he is seeking the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. Richard G. Lugar, a Republican.

Two Democrats with firsthand knowledge of Mr.  Donnelly’s plans told the Associated Press that the congressman is entering the race because he believes Mr. Lugar will lose a Republican primary, offering him a path to the Senate. Mr. Lugar is facing a strong challenge from his right in state Treasurer Richard Mourdock.

The Democrats spoke on the condition of anonymity because they did not want to pre-empt Monday’s announcement.

By entering the race, Mr. Donnelly — who also weighed a run for governor — gives national Democrats a recruiting victory. No other Democrats have entered the race. Mr. Donnelly’s supporters believe he can clear the Democratic primary field.

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