INDIANAPOLIS – The race for governor in 2024 is starting to take shape, with Senator Mike Braun filing paperwork for a 2024 campaign this past week, right as Congress nears its year-end deadline to pass legislation before Republicans take control of the House.
Braun decides to run
Braun filed campaign finance paperwork this week, with his chief of staff Josh Kelley saying a formal announcement is “coming very soon.” The Japser businessman was first elected to the upper house of Congress in 2018, following a competitive Republican primary. He previously served as a State Representative in the General Assembly. Braun commented on his gubernatorial prospects in the past, saying he’s satisfied with the time he has spent in the Senate.
“I’ve been pleased with what we have accomplished,” Sen. Braun said. “I pledged I wouldn’t do it past two terms.”
Political experts like University of Indianapolis political science professor Laura Wilson say Braun comes into the race with some key advantages.
“Name recognition having served as a U.S. Senator, as well as funding,” Wilson said. “He is very well-funded and he’s given his own money to his campaigns in the past.”
So far, Fort Wayne businessman Eric Doden is the only other candidate to announce his intention to run. He’s the former head of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. Experts say it’ll be a busy election for Hoosiers, having to decide on many important positions such as governor and one of Indiana’s Senate seats.
McCormick considers campaign
On the other side of aisle, former state superintendent Jennifer McCormick is considering a run for the Democratic nomination for governor after her decision to switch parties. She spoke one-on-one with Statehouse reporter Kristen Eskow about her plans and experience as Indiana’s top educator.
“I learned a ton during that time about how legislation works, how policy works, how important it is to work across the aisle,” McCormick said. “There are a lot of lessons that I learned that I am extremely excited now to take to the governor’s office.”
McCormick adds that a formal decision could come in “early 2023.”
“My family is very supportive, which was incredibly important to me,” McCormick said. “I think people are just eager for leadership that is common sense, that is willing to work with people, and will actually move Indiana in the direction we need to go to.”
McCormick addressed her party’s strategy after Republicans made major gains across the country after the midterm elections, especially here in Indiana. She says despite the conservative victories, there’s a lot of hope just by looking at the choice of candidates on the Democratic ticket.
“I was extremely proud of the candidate pool… and a lot of times Indiana it’s hard to encourage people to run,” McCormick said. “Obviously we’re at a disadvantage with the financial piece of it, and the party has a lot of room to grow.”
Watch more from Jennifer McCormick and the 2024 race for Indiana governor in the video above, and we highlight of the last-minute priorities for Congress before the end of the year.