Indiana State Treasurer Richard Mourdock Friday announced his resignation, four months before his term expires.
Mourdock was set to leave office at the end of the year, term-limited from running again. Instead, he resigns effective Friday to, in his words, “pursue other professional interests.”
The controversial Republican made headlines in 2012, first when he beat long-time incumbent Richard Lugar in the U-S Senate primary. He then lost to Democrat Joe Donnelly in the fall after comments in a debate calling pregnancies resulting from rape a “gift from God.”
As Treasurer, Mourdock in 2009 filed a lawsuit to block the federal government’s bailout of Chrysler. Governor Mike Pence Friday announced that Daniel Huge, chief financial officer of the Indiana Finance Authority, will temporarily replace Mourdock.
Pence says Huge’s appointment is only to ensure continuity of service and that a permanent replacement, who will serve out the remainder of Mourdock’s term, will come later.
State Democratic Party Chair John Zody criticized the resignation, saying the GOP has turned statewide offices into a revolving door. Mourdock’s decision to step down comes just as public pension benefits are set to decrease, which has led to a significant uptick in public employee retirements.