Sen. Johnny Nugent, R-Lawrenceburg, announced Monday that he would not pursue re-election after completing his current term.
“Volunteering to retire from the Senate has been one of my more difficult decisions,” Nugent said in a statement. “However, after a great amount of thoughtful prayer and quiet personal reflection, I have concluded that it’s time to pass the torch.”
Nugent said “genuine respect and consideration of my wife and family, business and health all weighed heavily on my decision to decline running for re-election.”
Nugent was first elected to the state Senate in 1978 and has since then served as the Senate majority caucus majority leader, chair of the Senate Agriculture and Small Business Committee for more that 20 years, and chair of the Roads and Transportation Committee.
Senate President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne, applauded Nugent as “a great leader and voice for the people of southeastern Indiana for more than 35 years.”
“He will be greatly missed by his constituents, as well as every Hoosier who values an experienced and patriotic voice for our state,” he said. “I will personally miss his institutional knowledge, his savvy, and also his friendship. I believe I can speak for all of his colleagues within the Indiana Senate in saying that we each wish Johnny great happiness and fulfillment in his retirement from public service.”
Nugent has authored a number of pro-Second Amendment bills including Indiana’s “Castle Doctrine,” which gives individuals broad authority to fight – even shoot – anyone who comes into their homes without permission. He also authored the law creating the nation’s first lifetime concealed carry permit. In addition, he’s been a strong supporter of hunters’ rights throughout his tenure and member of the National Rifle Association’s board of directors.
During his tenure in the Indiana General Assembly, Nugent has served the following counties: Bartholomew, Dearborn, Decatur, Jackson, Jennings, Ohio, Ripley, Union, Franklin, Switzerland and Fayette.