Indiana GOP state senator to step down after 36 years

INDIANAPOLIS - A longtime state senator from southeastern Indiana isn't seeking re-election next year.

Republican Sen. Johnny Nugent of Lawrenceburg announced Monday he would retire at the end of his current term. Nugent was first elected to the Senate in 1978. He has held numerous leadership positions and sponsored many gun rights measures.

Nugent joins a growing list of veteran senators who will be leaving the Legislature.

Republicans Allen Paul of Richmond and Tom Wyss of Fort Wayne and Democrat Lindel Hume of Princeton have also said they won't see new terms next year.

Recent legislative sessions have been filled with divisive battles over education policy, the right-to-work law and other hot button issues. The 2014 session will likely see a battle over the proposed constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.

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