An honorable Hoosier lawmaker has cast final last vote in the U.S. Senate.

Indiana's departing U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar's last act of compromise was to vote in support of Congress' "fiscal cliff" deal.

It was his willingness to compromise that contributed to Lugar's defeat in last year's primary election to tea party favorite Richard Mourdock who said compromise to him meant the other side coming over to his way of thinking.

Mourdock lost to Democrat Joe Donnelly who will be sworn in as Lugar's replacement.

Lugar leaves the Senate today after having cast 13,067 votes over nearly four decades in Washington.

Lugar's final vote caps decades of work across party lines. Lugar's service places him 10th on the list of total votes cast in a Senate career. West Virginia's late Sen. Robert Byrd tops that list with 18,689 votes cast over 50 years in the chamber.

Lugar would have nothing to do with the bravado that is so rampant in politics these days. His steady demeanor served him - and his constituents - well. He wasn't one to flaunt the considerable power he wielded.

Lugar now enters a new phase in his life. He'll do some teaching and, as an elder statesman, we're sure he'll be called on to weigh in on a variety of issues.

Regardless of how one felt about his politics, few would argue that Lugar represented our state well. He served with dignity and class ... attributes that are lacking in many of our current legislators.

We'll miss Richard Lugar. We thank him for his service to our state.