Early strategy, momentum carry Braun

Rachel Mummey/The Herald
Mike Braun of Jasper and his wife, Maureen, celebrated Braun’s victory during Tuesday's primary election for District 63 state representative. Braun beat fellow Republican Dr. Richard Moss of Jasper and will run for the seat in the November general election.

Herald Staff Writer

Jasper businessman Mike Braun was victorious Tuesday in his bid for the Republican nomination for the District 63 state representative seat.

Braun bested Dr. Richard Moss of Jasper in a district that includes parts of Dubois, Martin, Daviess and Pike counties.

“We got great momentum,” Braun said. “We ran a campaign that was based on strategy we set in June. That momentum continued to today.”

Districtwide, Braun received 4,610 votes, or 67 percent; Moss earned 2,292 votes, or 33 percent. In Dubois County, Braun won 1601 votes (77 percent) to Moss’ 477 votes (23 percent).

“I think we started neck and neck,” he said about the beginning of the campaigns. “I felt good about Dubois County, but in the other three counties, I think I was starting with a deficit. Dr. Moss has a practice that has engaged a lot of people in the entire area.”

Braun acknowledged Moss as a worthy contender.

“We are both good conservatives, and we both ran a clean campaign,” Braun said. “We both talked about what can do for District 63. He didn’t say anything negative about me, and I didn’t say anything negative about him. I feel good about that.”

Moss did not return calls from The Herald seeking comment.

As of now, Braun does not have an opponent in the fall election. He knows that could change, as parties have until the end of June to nominate candidates to open spots on their party’s ballot.

“I’ll run as if I am opposed,” he said. “I’ll keep getting my message out.”

Braun spent the primary election day in Daviess County, where he said 40 percent of the voters in his district reside. Thirty minutes after learning he won the nomination, Braun arrived at the Dubois County Republican Party headquarters in Jasper.

He was congratulated by many Republicans, including Mark Messmer, who won the Republican nomination for District 48 senate seat. Messmer is currently the state representative for District 63.

Rachel Mummey/The Herald
State Representative Mark Messmer of Jasper, his oldest daughter, Laura Sherman of Huntingburg, and Messmer's wife, Kim, watched election results on a laptop at Republican headquarters in Jasper on Tuesday. Messmer won the Republican nomination for the District 48 state senate seat.

Messmer received 7,643 votes, or 80 percent, to challenger Ted Metzger’s 1,904 votes, or 20 percent.

In Dubois County, Messmer received 1,961 votes (95 percent); Metzger received 115 votes (6 percent) and did not receive more than 15 votes in any Dubois County precinct. In the November general election Messmer, who lives in Jasper, will face Democrat Larry Vollmer, who lives in Ireland and is a Dubois County commissioner.

In the District 47 state senate race, Erin Houchin of Salem defeated Tad Whitis of Laconia for the Republican nomination. Houchin received 5,630 votes, or 57 percent, to Whitis’ 4,166 votes, or 43 percent. In Dubois County, Houchin earned 347 votes (72 percent); Whitis received 144 votes (28 percent). Houchin will face Democratic incumbent Richard Young of Milltown in the fall election.

Contact Candy Neal at cneal@dcherald.com.


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