Senate Republicans get front seat to brewing Indiana Senate clash

Mitch Daniels is on a Goldilocks mission: Finding out whether the Senate is just right for his deal-cutting style.

The former Indiana governor and Purdue University president embarked on a tour of Capitol Hill Wednesday to figure out whether running for his state’s open Senate seat makes sense, talking to senators both happy and frustrated with their jobs. The well-known Republican has insisted politics is not on his mind, as conservatives line up behind potential primary rival Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.).

No stranger to the institution — Daniels served as the late Sen. Richard Lugar’s chief of staff for five years after once managing his campaign — he’s instead emphasized that he’s figuring out whether he’ll be happy with six years schlepping through the Capitol as the most junior senator in the building. After all, it’s a place that’s changed a great deal over the past few decades.

“I’m not the least bit worried, honestly, about losing an election. I’m

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