Mike Braun wins Indiana GOP Senate primary

Mike Braun wins Indiana GOP Senate primary
Businessman Mike Braun beat two sitting congressmen to represent the GOP in the general election against Sen. Joe Donnelly.
Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Indiana) (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Indiana) (Source: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A Jasper, Indiana native took down two sitting congressmen to secure the Republican nomination in a hotly-contested U.S. Senate race.

Mike Braun captured more than 40 percent of the vote with Congressmen Luke Messer and Todd Rokita scoring around 28 percent each.

The focus now moves to the general election where Braun will face the incumbent, Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly.

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"He has managed to disguise himself from what real Hoosier values are about," Braun said. "Hoosiers do not run to government first to solve problems."

The race is shaping up to be one of the most expensive races of the year and Braun has already spent a lot of his own money. Throughout his primary campaign, Braun, the owner of a logistics company, positioned himself as a businessman outsider.

"Well as far as I know he served in the state legislature," Donnelly said. "What I think people really want is a focus on their lives and making sure we keep and grow jobs here in Indiana."

Donnelly is serving his first term as Indiana Senator. He said he wants to focus on health care and pushing back on tax reforms he sees as harmful for Hoosier.

"We need to beat Joe Donnelly and I know from being around the state that all Republicans and most Hoosiers are united in that effort," Rokita said.

Even after losing, Rokita is keeping the focus on the GOP gaining another seat in the Senate.

"I wouldn't take any of it back," Messer said. "It has been an extraordinary opportunity to be here."

Messer, Rokita and Braun spent months digging at each other. Donnelly now wants to change the tone.

"I think it's about the issues and I am looking forward to talking about them," he said.

The Indiana Senate seat is a coveted one and the election will be a very important race for both parties.

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