The Indiana Republican primary is moving against Richard Lugar, and now his campaign and SuperPAC are getting desperate, running false ads against Richard Mourdock claiming Mourdock cheated on taxes.

Matt Lewis at The Daily Caller explored the falsehood yesterday:

In what appears a pathetic last gasp at power, both Lugar and a SuperPAC called the  American Action Network are running 30-second TV spots alleging that  Mourdock received “$45,000 in illegal second homestead tax deductions.”

There’s just one problem: Mourdock’s campaign has documented that the tax  error was made by the Marion County Auditor’s Office — “who accepted  responsibility for making a clerical mistake.” What is more, the paperwork in question  was filed by a prior owner, not by Mourdock.

In this interview (sorry, no embed available) by a local television news station Mourdock explains the falsity of Lugar’s attacks:

“I reported it to them,” said Mourdock. “They noted in their files that it was not the taxpayer’s mistake. It was their mistake. When I brought it to their attention, they told me I didn’t owe any back taxes. I said that’s not good enough. They said I should pay two years, and I said, ‘No, let’s go back the full time,’ and I paid three years back taxes after I corrected their error.”

Just yesterday a poll commissioned by the Mourdock campaign among likely Republican voters showed a virtual dead heat, with Mourdock slightly in the lead.

Dick Lugar is beatable, but those in Indiana who know him also know that he is not the gentleman-politician he purports to be:

I’ve warned people who read this blog that history tells us that the real Dick Lugar has run some of the dirtiest campaigns of any politician in this state’s history whenever he has faced a difficult race. Proving once again how low he will stoop, Lugar is accusing Indiana State Treasurer Richard Mourdock of homestead exemption fraud.

These next three weeks are critical.  Lugar plans on trotting out ads by John McCain and Mitch Daniels in the hope of reversing the momentum.

A defeat of Lugar will signal that the Tea Party and conservative movements are not dead, and that it is time for the Republican Senator who helped Barack Obama get elected to retire.

Support Mourdock and make a difference when it matters.  I just did.