Spartz, Shreve, Stutzman win Republican congressional primaries

U.S. Rep. Victoria Spartz holds a press conference on Formula 1 races. (Credit: Office of Victoria Spartz)

May 08, 2024

A central Indiana congresswoman successfully fought off eight primary challengers, while crowded races for three other Republican-leaning congressional districts began to clear in Tuesday’s primary election. 

And in northeastern Indiana, a former congressman held on in a tight race as he seeks to return to Congress. 

All of the state’s nine U.S. House of Representatives seats and one of its U.S. Senate positions are up for grabs.

Tuesday marked the end of an incredibly expensive primary season. According to an AdImpact report, more than $25 million was spent across Indiana’s congressional districts on ads alone — an increase of 728% over 2022. 

Here’s how each of the races are shaking out based on election night vote totals. All results are preliminary until the primary is certified by election officials. 

5th Congressional District

Republican Rep. Victoria Spartz defeated a cluster of Republican challengers, earning about 39% of the vote. 

She faced a bitter challenge from state Rep. Chuck Goodrich to advance her re-election campaign. Goodrich had about 33%. 

The Associated Press called the race for Spartz just before 8:30 p.m. 

Goodrich conceded defeat in a statement on X

“Although the election outcome was not what we hoped for, our campaign has left an indelible mark, emphasizing the pressing need to secure our southern border, safeguard Indiana values and oppose the liberal woke agenda that seeks to divide and destroy our country,” he wrote. 

Seven other Republicans ran in the primary and split the vote: Raju Chinthala, Max Engling, Mark Hurt, Patrick Malayter, Matthew Peiffer, L.D. Powell and Larry L. Savage Jr.

Goodrich raised more than $5.4 million, including a $4.6 million personal loan to his campaign, in his bid to unseat Spartz, who in 2023 signaled her intent to leave Congress before changing her mind earlier this year. 

Spartz spent a little more than $2 million during the primary. 

In the Democratic primary, Deborah Pickett defeated Ryan Pfenninger, earning about 60% of the vote. 

Spartz’s district leans Republican. She won re-election in 2022 by more than 22 percentage points. 

6th Congressional District

Former Indianapolis mayoral candidate Jefferson Shreve defeated state Rep. Mike Speedy and state Sen. Jeff Raatz in the 6th Congressional District Republican primary.

The Associated Press called the race for Shreve just after 8:45 p.m. He received 28% of the vote. 

In a statement on X, Shreve said he was honored to receive the Republican Party’s nomination. 

“I’ve worked hard every day of my life as a business owner, and I’ll take that same determination and work ethic to Washington to fight for our conservative values and help solve the tough challenges facing our country,” he wrote.

Shreve loaned his campaign about $5.6 million, flooding TV airwaves with campaign ads. 

Speedy loaned himself $1.3 million. 

Jamison E. Carrier, Darin Childress, Bill Frazier and John Jacob also ran as Republicans. All were hoping to replace retiring Rep. Greg Pence. 

Speedy and Carrier, each earning 22% of the vote, finished behind Shreve. 

Cynthia Wirth, whom Pence defeated by 35 percentage points in 2022, advanced unopposed out of the Democratic primary. James Sceniak will represent Libertarians on the ballot. 

3rd Congressional District

Former Rep. Marlin A. Stutzman narrowly bested a field of more than a half-dozen other Republicans hoping to replace 3rd Congressional District Rep. Jim Banks, who is running for the U.S. Senate. 

Stutzman received just 24% of the vote, but The Associated Press called the race in his favor just before 9:30 p.m. 

Stutzman previously held this seat from 2010 to 2017. 

Stutzman faced stiff campaign competition from former Fort Wayne mayoral candidate Tim Smith and former Allen County Judge Wendy Davis, who each raised over $1 million. 

Smith (23%) and Davis (20%) finished just behind Stutzman. 

Grant Bucher, Mike Felker, Jon Kenworthy, Eric Whalen and Andy Zay also ran on the Republican side. 

Kiley Adolph defeated Phil Goss in the Democratic primary after gaining nearly two-thirds of the vote. 

Libertarian Jarrad Lancaster will also be on the November ballot. 

8th Congressional District

State Sen. Mark Messmer emerged from a crowded Republican field vying to replace outgoing Rep. Larry Bucshon in the 8th Congressional District. 

His main challengers were former Rep. John Hostettler, former President Donald Trump White House staff member Dominick Kavanaugh and frequent Bucshon primary challenger Richard Moss. 

Messmer pulled in nearly 40% of the vote. The Associated Press called the race just before 8 p.m. 

Kavanaugh and Moss loaned their campaigns $500,000 and $545,000, respectively, for their bids. Messmer raised more than $763,000. 

Jim Case, Jeremy Heath, Luke Misner and Kristi Risk rounded out the Republican field. 

On the Democratic side, Erik Hurt advanced out of a four-person field, having pulled in 45% of the vote. 

4th Congressional District

Rep. Jim Baird defeated Charles Bookwalter and John P. Piper in the Republican primary for Indiana’s 4th Congressional District. 

Baird received about two-thirds of the vote. The Associated Press called the race just before 7:30 p.m. 

Derrick Holder defeated Rimpi Girn in the Democratic primary after earning 63% of the vote. 

U.S. Senate

The race to replace outgoing U.S. Sen. Mike Braun, the frontrunner for governor, became clear, as clinical psychologist Valerie McCray defeated former state Rep. Marc Carmichael in the Democratic primary. 

The Associated Press declared her victory shortly after the state’s polls closed. She held 65% of the vote as of 7 p.m. 

Banks ran unopposed on the Republican side and will be the favorite in November, given the statewide voter advantage his party enjoys. 

9th Congressional District

In the 9th Congressional District, Rep. Erin Houchin easily dispatched Hugh Doty in the Republican primary, earning 81% of the vote. 

The Associated Press called the race for Houchin shortly after polls closed. 

Democrat Timothy Peck will challenge Houchin, having defeated D. Liam Dorris in the other primary. Peck received more than two-thirds of the vote. 

7th Congressional District

Rep. André Carson dispatched two challengers in the Democratic primary for the 7th Congressional District. He received more than 91% of the vote. 

Jennifer Pace — who died after the deadline to remove names from the ballot, according to The Indianapolis Star defeated Catherine Ping by just over one percentage point in the Republican primary. 

According to Indiana law, Republican Party committee members from within the congressional district must now caucus to select a new candidate.

Libertarian Russel “Rusty” Johnson has already qualified for the general election. 

1st Congressional District

In the 1st Congressional District, Democratic Rep. Frank Mrvan advanced without a primary challenge. 

Randy Niemeyer won the Republican primary with 60% of the vote, according to The Associated Press, and will face Mrvan in November. 

2nd Congressional District

The 2nd Congressional District did not feature a contested primary race. Rep. Rudy Yakym, a Republican, will face Democrat Lori Camp and Libertarian William Henry in November.

Update: This story has been updated with the most recent results.

Contact Rory Appleton on X at @roryehappleton or email him at [email protected].

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