Favorites Win Nearly Everywhere on First Big Primary Night of 2018

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Republican Senate candidate Mike Braun and his wife Maureen greets supporters after winning the republican primary in Whitestown, Ind., Tuesday, May 8, 2018. Other than that, though, this was simply not a night for upsets. You can say the same about dogs that did not bark in the other three states' primary election results.

Hendricks County Republicans helped boost Mike Braun to a primary victory on Tuesday over Luke Messer and Todd Rokita, pitting him against incumbent Sen.

Indiana Republican voters picked Vice President Mike Pence's brother and a state lawmaker who lost his left arm during the Vietnam War as nominees for two congressional seats vacated by incumbents who fell short Tuesday in the GOP Senate primary.

Braun, too, has taken several pages out of Trump's campaign playbook.


Among the three, Braun probably has the best chance against Donnelly, particularly if he keeps coming up with money.

Pence raised almost $1.2 million for his campaign thanks largely to the support of his brother, pro-Trump groups and top Republicans.

The primaries in West Virginia, Ohio, North Carolina and in kicked off a busy month of roughly a dozen contests that will establish congressional matchups for November and shape expectations as the parties battle for control of the House and Senate. It's the most pro-Trump state in the country - he won it by 42 points - and it has a vulnerable Democratic incumbent, Sen.

State Rep. Jim Baird, of Greencastle, defeated two members of Mike Pence's gubernatorial administration to win the GOP primary in the heavily Republican 4th District. Matt Hostettler, the son of former U.S. Rep. John Hostettler, won a three-way race for an open GOP seat in the Evansville area. That means the conservative eccentric, who opposed both the Iraq War and last year's GOP tax bill, will win another term, as no Democrat is running against him.


The elections Tuesday in IN, as well as in North Carolina, Ohio and West Virginia, were the first of 11 primaries slated to take place this month that will be the latest tests of the anti-establishment fervor that helped power Mr. Trump into The White House. Cordray, the former head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, had been expected to beat ex-congressman Dennis Kucinich, the progressive favorite. Kucinich did not win a single county, even in his northeast OH base.

In a phone conversation with The Herald last month, he said the main reason he threw his hat in the ring was because after building a career and a business outside of the political world, he learned many things he believes would be applicable to the U.S. Senator role.

He also indicated he will continue the tone and theme of his primary election campaign in his general election battle with Donnelly, regarded as among the most vulnerable Democratic senators up for re-election this year. But Tiberi's endorsed candidate, Troy Balderson, struggled against conservative firebrand Melanie Leneghan in an expensive slugfest that became a surrogate fight between D.C. -based moderate and conservative PACs. He votes with President Trump's position about half the time.


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