Richard Lugar

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Richard Lugar

Template:TOCnestleft Richard Lugar was, until 2012, a Republican Senator from Indiana. He is the U.S. Senate's most senior Republican and longest serving U.S. Senator in Indiana history. He was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1976 and won a sixth term in 2006 with 87 percent of the vote, his fourth consecutive victory by a two-thirds majority.

Richard Lugar and his wife, Charlene, were married September 8, 1956, and have four sons and thirteen grandchildren.[1]

Prior to serving in Congress, Senator Lugar was a Rhodes Scholar and Mayor of Indianapolis from 1968 to 1975. He currently serves as President of The Lugar Center.

Committee service

Lugar is the Republican leader of the Foreign Relations Committee and a member and former chairman of the Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee.[2]


Senator Lugar graduated first in his class at both Shortridge High School in Indianapolis and Denison University in Granville, Ohio. He attended Pembroke College at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, studying politics, philosophy and economics.[3]

Richard Lugar, was involved with the high school that Alice Palmer attended.[4]

Navy service

Senator Lugar volunteered for the U.S. Navy in 1957, ultimately serving as an intelligence briefer for Admiral Arleigh Burke, Chief of Naval Operations.[5]

Business career

Senator Lugar manages his family's 604-acre Marion County corn, soybean and tree farm. Before entering public life, he helped manage the family's food machinery manufacturing business in Indianapolis with his brother Tom.[6]

Early politics

As the two-term mayor of Indianapolis (1968-75), Lugar envisioned the unification of the city and surrounding Marion County into one government. Unigov, as Mayor Lugar's plan was called, set the city on a path of uninterrupted economic growth. He served three terms on the U.S. Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations, including two terms as the Vice-Chair of the Commission, and served as President of the National League of Cities.[7]

Trip to People's Republic of China

In January 1978 Senate Majority Whip Alan Cranston urged the United States yesterday to normalize relations with the People's Republic of China "as soon as possible" along lines suggested by the Chinese. Cranston, who led a 10-member congressional delegation on a four-city tour of China, said he doesn't believe that Peking will try to take Taiwan by force if the United States renounces a mutual defense treaty in effect since 1954. The California Democrat, declaring that he feels more urgently about the need to set up diplomatic ties with China because of his trip, said, "I feel we should do so swiftly, that we should recognize the absurdity of maintaining our relationship with Taiwan on the grounds it is the government of all China. Clearly, it is not. . . Cranston noted the terms outlined by Peking for normalized relations: an end to U.S.-Taiwanese diplomatic relations although trade and cultural ties could continue; an end to the mutual U.S.Taiwanese defense treaty and withdrawal of U.S. military personnel from the island off the Asian mainland.

"I think we should proceed on those termsas soon as possible," Cranston said. Defense treaty He noted that renouncing the mutual defense treaty would eliminate a legal obligation for the United States to intervene if Peking moves militarily against Taiwan. It would not preclude such a move, however, if the United States decided one were necessary. Cranston said he discussed his views with President Jimmy Carter on Monday aboard the plane carrying Carter back to Washington from Minnesota, where he attended funeral services for Hubert Humphrey. Carter "didn't comment," he said. United States policy, as set out in the Shanghai Communique signed at the end of President Richard Nixon's trip to China in 1972, favors eventual normalization in diplomatic relations. But the question of Taiwan has been the main stumbling block. Cranston declined to say precisely how soon he thinks the United States can move toward normalized relations with Peking. "I doubt that practically it can be done this year," he said, especially in view of administration foreign policy concerns with the Panama Canal treaties and strategic arms limitation talks with the Soviet Union. Not fearful But he also said he was not fearful that the issue would be politically damaging if it were raised in advance of the 1980 presidential elections. "I think there will be some uproar and then when China doesn't make an immediate grab for Taiwan it will die down," he said.

With Cranston in China for a 14-day trip that ended a day early because of Humphrey's death were Sens. Charles Mathias (R-Md.), James Abourezk (D-S.D.), Gary Hart (D-Colo.), and Richard Lugar (R-lnd.) and Reps. Charles Whalen (R-Ohio), James Weaver (D-Ore.), Stephen Neal (D-N.C.), Fred Richmond (D-N.Y.) and Steven Solarz (D-N.Y.). The group traveled to Peking, Shanghai, Nanking and Canton, touring numerous facilities as well as holding discussions with several Chinese officials. Cranston said he found among Chinese leaders a "discouraging acceptance of the inevitably of war" because of differences between the United States and Russia.[8]

Attitude to Soviet dissidents

Vadim Zagladin, was deputy chief of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union's Central Committee’s International Department until 1987 and then Mikhail Gorbachev’s advisor until 1991. Zagladin was both envoy and spy, charged with gathering secrets, spreading disinformation, and advancing Soviet influence.

Zagladin’s wrote this of his dealings with Senators Joe Biden, and Richard Lugar in 1979?

Unofficially, [Senator Joseph] Biden and [Senator Richard] Lugar said that, in the end of the day, they were not so much concerned with having a problem of this or that citizen solved as with showing to the American public that they do care for “human rights.” . . . In other words, the collocutors directly admitted that what is happening is a kind of a show, that they absolutely do not care for the fate of most so-called dissidents.[9]

UN booster

Writing in Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Oct 1993, John Isaacs, executive director of Council for a Livable World, Bulletin contributing editor said "Not that there aren't UN boosters in Congress, including such senators as Indiana Republican Richard Lugar, and Democrats Joe Biden of Delaware, David Boren of Oklahoma, Paul Simon of Illinois.

On July 14 Biden, Boren, Simon and Pell introduced a bill calling on the United States to to designate specific forces for peacekeeping under Article 43 of the UN Charter. A companion measure was introduced in the House by New Jersey Democrat Robert Toricelli.


Senator Lugar has been a leader in reducing the threat of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. In 1991, he forged a bipartisan partnership with then-Senate Armed Services Chairman, Sam Nunn (D-Ga.), to destroy these weapons of mass destruction in the former Soviet Union. To date, the Nunn-Lugar program has deactivated more than 7,500 nuclear warheads that were once aimed at the United States.[10]

In the summer of 1986, President Ronald Reagan asked a bipartisan group of United States Senate leaders to attend meetings in Geneva, Switzerland. His hope was that formal negotiations between the former Soviet Union and the United States would commence and perhaps lead to a treaty on nuclear arms reduction that would come before the United States Senate for ratification and require a two-thirds majority vote. Formal arms control negotiations did not commence that year, and Senator Sam Nunn and Richard Lugar took the opportunity in subsequent years during visits to Europe to stay in touch with Russians we had met in Washington or during travels in Russia.

In 1991, some of the Russians with whom we had maintained ties came to visit Senator Sam Nunn and me in Senator Nunn’s Washington office. They portrayed dire circumstances in which nuclear weapons might not have sufficient security, in which military personnel sometimes were deserting their posts, and circumstances in which the security of Russia and the United States would be jeopardized without vigorous and prompt American assistance. Prompt drafting and passage of the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program in the last days of the 1991 United States Senate session provided a timely and vitally necessary response. The Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program evolved into a very important way in which Russia and the United States provided not only essential action for security of our two countries but reassurance of our leadership to the rest of the world.
It is a personal privilege on June 14 for me to be present with Senator Sam Nunn as we witness Assistant Secretary of State Rose Gottemoeller and Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United States Sergey I. Kislyak sign a new agreement which provides for additional cooperative efforts under terms of a new agreement following the umbrella agreement that expired on June 17.

Russia and the United States have successfully defended against the existential threat initially posed by developments in 1991, and I hope that we will find new ways of working together both in Russia but also in new locations as our two countries deal with new threats and assume additional responsibilities. As a result of our work, together, in Russia, many terrorist groups have moved their efforts to acquire weapons and materials of mass destruction to new places such as Africa and Southeast Asia. The Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program is not ending but is moving with the threats to our security and to the rest of the world.
I look forward to learning of ways in which Americans including Senator Sam Nunn and I can be helpful and supportive. We look forward to additional cooperative and positive developments.[11]

Agriculture committee

As Chairman of the Agriculture Committee, Senator Lugar built bipartisan support for 1996 federal farm program reforms, ending 1930s era federal production controls. He has promoted broader risk management options for farmers, research advancements, increased export opportunities and higher net farm income. Senator Lugar initiated a biofuels research program to help decrease U.S. dependency on foreign oil. He also led initiatives to streamline the U.S. Department of Agriculture, reform the food stamp program and preserve the federal school lunch program.

Combining his experiences on the Foreign Relations and Agriculture Committees and recognizing that energy security impacts every aspect of life in the United States, from the cars we drive and how much we pay at the gas pump to our vulnerability to foreign terrorism and our relationships with other countries, Senator Lugar launched the Lugar Energy Initiative.[12]

Senator Lugar has promoted policies that spur economic growth, cut taxes, lead to job creation, eliminate wasteful government spending and reduce bureaucratic red tape for American businesses.

Supported by Council for a Livable World

Council for a Livable World, 2010 endorsement

The Council for a Livable World, founded in 1962 by long-time socialist activist and alleged Soviet agent, Leo Szilard, is a non-profit advocacy organization that seeks to "reduce the danger of nuclear weapons and increase national security", primarily through supporting progressive, congressional candidates who support their policies. The Council supported Richard Lugar in his successful Senate run as candidate for Indiana.[13]

In the 1999/2000 election cycle Jerome Grossman (on behalf of C.L.W.) donated $250 to Lugar's campaign.

In 2010, C.L.W. endorsed Lugar in his Senate race.

Credit for New START treaty

According to the Council for a Livable World, in December 2010, After a battle that lasted many months, the Senate voted 71-26 to give its advice and consent to the New START Resolution of Ratification.

The effort to win the Senate’s two-thirds majority was like riding a roller coaster, with optimism followed by pessimism followed by optimism and back and forth.
Ultimately, the vote was a remarkably bipartisan victory in an intensely hyper-partisan atmosphere. It is a victory for the consensus of former national security officials of both parties and both active duty and retired military.
Ratification of the treaty is only the beginning. The U.S. and Russia should take advantage of the momentum created by the approval of New START to pursue negotiations on reductions in all types of nuclear warheads, including non-deployed and non-strategic warheads, in a timely manner.

Lots of credit goes to Senators Kerry and Lugar (R-IN), who managed the treaty, other Senators who have been active for the treaty such as Casey (D-PA), Shaheen (D-NH), Cardin (D-MD), Franken (D-MN) and others, the Obama Administration who put together a terrific campaign (and I will not name everyone because there are too many to name) and a terrific effort by the arms control community.[14]


In 2005 the DREAM Act, a narrowly tailored, bipartisan measure that Dick Durbin sponsored with Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) and Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN), would permit undocumented students to become permanent residents if they came to the US as children, are long-term U.S. residents, have good moral character, and attend college or enlist in the military for at least two years.[15]

In Russia with Obama

Lugar, Obama in Perm, August 2008

A U.S. delegation headed by Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was detained August 2005 for three hours at an airport in Russia before being allowed to leave the country for Ukraine.

Russian border guards at the airport in the Siberian city of Perm demanded to search the U.S. government aircraft carrying the delegation, which also included Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., who was making his first foreign trip since becoming a senator. Obama is also a member of the Foreign Relations Committee.

American officials, citing a U.S.-Russian agreement that does not allow such inspections, refused to allow the search, leading to a three-hour standoff. [16]

Fighting the Cuba travel ban

According to Boston Democratic Socialists of America's The Yankee Radical June 2009;[17]

This travel ban, enacted in 1962, is now under attack from a left-right coalition including the Chamber of Commerce, agribusiness, Human Rights Watch and civil liberties groups. The other side, comprised of cold war hard liners and much of the Cuban émigré community, is using the lack of free elections and democratic rights in Cuba as arguments for keeping the ban. Although as Sam Farber notes in his recent book on the Cuban revolution, the original justification for the travel ban and trade embargo had nothing to do with reasons like these—it was Castro’s interference with the “freedom” of American corporations to dominate the Cuban economy.

According to Amnesty International, Cuba now has 58 political “prisoners of conscience”, down from the thousands of years past. Amnesty nonetheless opposes the American trade embargo and travel ban, as do most Cubans, including Oswaldo Paya, the leading democratic oppositionist. And this year efforts to at least lift the travel ban might actually succeed, give[[n our new President and Democratic Congress. The Senate bill, S.428, is sponsored by Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) and Dick Lugar (R-IN); in the House, Cape Cod Congressman]] Bill Delahunt is a key advocate. Contact his office for more information..

Ending Cuban sanctions

The committee report produced in February, 2009, Republican Senator Richard Lugar, the Ranking Member on the U. S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee details the results of a trip by one of his staff members to Cuba, in January that year. In part, the report said, "Economic sanctions are a legitimate tool of U.S. foreign policy, and they have sometimes achieved their aims, as in the case of apartheid South Africa. After 47 years, however, the unilateral embargo on Cuba has failed to achieve its stated purpose of 'bringing democracy to the Cuban people.'" I believe, strongly, that now is the time for the forward march of justice to take root so that it might bear fruit in the form of economic prosperity and democratic freedom for the people of Cuba.[18]

Help on Iranian visas

In October of 2002 Iranian American Political Action Committee met with Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY), the then Chairmen of the Senate Judiciary Sub-committee on Immigration, to discuss the immediate impact of the implementation of the Section 306 of the Enhanced Border Security & Visa Enter Reform Act. Section 306 of the law contemplates a ban on the issuance of all non-immigrant visas to residents or nationals of the seven countries that appear on the Department of State's list of state sponsors of international terrorism - including Iran...IAPAC spoke to Senator Schumer about the unfairness and short sightedness of the legislation and presented to him specific recommendations drafted by the Iranian American Bar Association on how Section 306 should be interpreted. Senator Schumer agreed to hold and chair a meeting with the Department of Justice, the Department of State and the Central Intelligence Agency to discuss the regulations that will be applied regarding the implementation of Section 306.

IAPAC also requested the following Senators to attend the meeting - Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Sen. John Kerry (D-MA), Sen. John Edwards (D-NC), Sen. Thomas Carper (D-DE), Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY), Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE), Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT) and Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN). All sent representatives to the meeting and were in agreement with our proposals. The first meeting was held in November of 2002 and the second meeting was held in March of 2003.

In addition, IAPAC asked for and received a press release from Senator Schumer regarding visa policy for non-immigrants. Senator Schumer summed up his concerns by stating that "we do not want our non-immigrant visa policy to impose an undue hardship on American citizens, including Iranian Americans, many of whom have made and continue to make outstanding contributions to the economic and social life of our country."[19]

NAKASEC support

NAKASEC and its affiliates, the Korean American Resource and Cultural Center and the Korean Resource Center, applauded Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN) for their letter to Department of Homeland Security asking for deferred action of DREAM Act-eligible students facing deportation. The DREAM Act is a bipartisan legislation that is part of comprehensive immigration reform and would allow eligible undocumented students pathway to citizenship. It was introduced by Senator Durbin and Senator Lugar on March 26, 2009.

EunSook Lee, executive director of NAKASEC said, “The current system is unbearable and unacceptable. We welcome this letter from Senators Durbin and Lugar which shows that bipartisanship is possible. As we work towards urgent reforms that will change our immigration laws, we urge the DHS to take decisive action immediately to stop the deportation of DREAM-eligible students.”

Judy Kim, a college student from Chicago, stated on behalf of NAKASEC affiliate youth group members: “I hear about the deportation of students like Rigo Padilla, Laura Perez and Herta Llusho and I wonder when it will happen to me. I am a full-time college student in Chicago and was brought to the U.S. when I was 9 years old. I am also a DREAM student. The letter by Senator Durbin and Senator Lugar really gives me hope that there are people out there, including our elected officials, that see that we need to fix our broken immigration system and do something so that students, who grew up here and want to give back, are not deported. I truly hope DHS responds to their letter and grants deferred action to DREAM students. This will bring comfort to thousands of families who came here for their children, including my family.”[20]

Roosevelt Institute

Lugar sits on the National Advisory Board of the Roosevelt Institute. The namesakes of the Institute are Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. Historical leaders of the Progressive movement.[21]

Serving as advisors to the Roosevelt Institute are:[22]

The Roosevelt Institute works closely with many progressive political and educational organizations to encourage public debate, promote sound public policy and involve students in the civic life of their communities. In addition, they are supportive of the efforts of a wide range of groups involved in similar progressive causes. Partners include:[23]



  1. Official senate bio]
  2. Official senate bio]
  3. Official senate bio]
  4. Interview with Alice Palmer, Katherine Elizabeth McAuliff, Columbia College - Chicago, Spring 2010,
  5. Official senate bio]
  6. Official senate bio]
  7. Official senate bio]
  8. [The Stanford Daily, Volume 172, Issue 61, 18 January 1978]
  9. City Journal, Claire Berlinski A Hidden History of Evil Why doesn’t anyone care about the unread Soviet archives? Spring 2010
  10. Official senate bio]
  11. The Lugar center blog, The New U. S.-Russia Nunn-Lugar CTR Agreement. BY: RICHARD G. LUGAR | 20-JUN-2013
  12. Official senate bio]
  13. CLW website: Meet Our Candidates
  14. CLW, The Chain Reaction, New START Debate (Day 8, the final day – December 22) DEC 22, 2010 | POSTED BY JOHN ISAACS
  15. Dick Durbin website, ,May 25, 2006, Comprehensive Immigration Reform Legislation Approved By Senate
  16. [ Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current) Article date:August 29, 2005, Peter Finn]
  17. TYR, June 2009
  18. April 22, 2009, 12:14 pm My Hopes and Dreams for the People of Cuba (Rep. Bobby Rush) By Ill. Dem. Rep. Bobby Rush
  19. [IAPAC Discusses Visa Regulations with Senator SchumerThursday, July 3, 2003]
  20. NAKASEC Press release: NAKASEC Applauds Senator Durbin and Senator Lugar for their Leadership to Stop the Deportation of Undocumented Students APRIL 21, 2010
  21. Roosevelt History Roosevelt Institute, October 29, 2010
  22. National Advisory Board Roosevelt Institute, October 29, 2010
  23. Partners Roosevelt Institute, October 29, 2010