Sen. Mike Braun wins GOP primary for Indiana governor

Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.) has come out on top of a crowded GOP primary in Indiana’s gubernatorial race, according to Decision Desk HQ.

Braun, a first-term senator, beat out five other Republican hopefuls, including Indiana Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch and former state Attorney General Curtis Hill.

Emerson College Polling/The Hill polling from March found Braun with a sizeable lead over the primary field, but a plurality of voters reported being undecided.

In the general election, Braun’s on track to go against Jennifer McCormick, a former state superintendent and the only Democratic gubernatorial candidate on the ballot. She won the state’s top education job as a Republican, but switched parties after her term ended.

The Democratic contender will likely have an uphill battle, though, in November. The Hoosier State has boasted a Republican trifecta — or GOP control of the state House, state Senate and the governor’s mansion — since 2011.

Braun and McCormick are also set to face Libertarian candidate Donald Rainwater in the fall.

Braun is exiting the upper chamber in a bid to replace term-limited Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R), leaving his own Senate seat open.

Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) has Braun’s backing — and former President Trump’s endorsement — for the Senate seat, and he’s the only GOP contender on the ballot. That also puts Banks’s seat in the House up for grabs this year.

Meanwhile, Trump and President Biden both won Indiana primaries within their respective parties Tuesday. Trump won Indiana in 2016, and then beat Biden by double digits in the state in 2020. Indiana has voted red in every presidential election over the last six decades, with the exception of siding with former President Obama back in 2008.

This story was updated at 9:46 p.m. EST

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