Donnelly v Braun debate

Incumbent Joe Donnelly (D) and challenger Mike Braun (R)

In a hotly contested Senate race, Republican challenger Mike Braun unseated incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly on Tuesday.

Along with other key wins around the country, Braun's victory ensured GOP control of the United States Senate.

Donnelly was first elected in 2012, defeating Republican Richard Mourdock to take retiring six-term incumbent Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Indiana. Now the only elected statewide Democrat, Donnelly faced Braun, as well as several third-party candidates including Libertarian Lucy Brenton and Independent Scott Fischer.

With 85.9 percent of 5,341 precincts reporting to the Indiana Secretary of State's office as of midnight, the vote totals stood at:

  • Braun—53 percent—959,817 votes
  • Donnelly—42.2 percent—754,630 votes
  • Brenton—4.1 percent—74,026 votes
  • Nathan Altman (independent write-in)—8 votes
  • James L. Johnson Jr. (independent write-in)—1 vote
  • Christopher Fischer (independent write-in)—0 votes

Congratulations for Braun came in immediately:

Gov. Eric Holcomb:

“Congratulations to Mike Braun, Indiana’s next U.S. Senator. I’ve always said that we need more Indiana in Washington, and that’s exactly what we’re getting with Mike Braun. Mike Braun understands the 28 words of the 10th Amendment. He’s built a homegrown Indiana business and served at the Statehouse. He knows a thing or two about Hoosier solutions – and he’ll take those solutions with him Washington.”

Indiana Republican Party Chairman Kyle Hupfer:

“Tonight, Hoosiers have made history with the election of Senator-elect Mike Braun. With their ballots, Hoosiers voted to send another businessman to Washington who will stand with President Donald Trump to deliver real results for Hoosiers. He’s been working at building solutions in the private sector, in the state legislature, and now after one of the nation’s most competitive U.S. Senate races, he’ll do the same thing in the U.S. Senate. Congratulations, Mike Braun!”

Carol Tobias, president National Right to Life:

"We congratulate pro-life Senator-elect Mike Braun, National Right to Life's outreach to Indiana voters was key to ensuring that the pro-life values of the Hoosier State are truly represented in the U.S. Senate by Mike Braun. National Right to Life looks forward to working with Mike Braun in the U.S. Senate to advance life-affirming, pro-life policies that protect unborn children and their mothers.”

Rob Burgess, News Editor at NUVO Newsweekly, can be reached by email at rburgess@nuvo.net, by phone at 317-808-4614 or on Twitter @robaburg.

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