Washington (AFP) – Greg Pence, the older brother of US Vice President Mike Pence, cruised to victory in a Republican primary Tuesday, leaving him in prime position to become a member of Congress next year.
Should he prevail as expected in November’s mid-term elections in the conservative Indiana district that his brother represented for a decade, the political novice Pence will provide President Donald Trump’s administration with a valuable personal ally in the House of Representatives.
Pence, a religious conservative, entrepreneur and former US Marine, was far ahead of nearest challenger Jonathan Lamb, by 64 percent to 24 percent, with most precincts reporting.
He aims to replace Republican congressman Luke Messer, who on Tuesday lost his own bid to win Indiana’s bitterly contested Republican Senate primary.
The winner of that race, businessman and former state legislator Mike Braun, will take on incumbent Senate Democrat Joe Donnelly in November, when Republicans hope to hold their slim majority in the Senate.
Pence, 61, has given few media interviews during the race. In campaign materials he calls himself a trusted conservative and insists Trump is “bringing back the American dream.”
He also has pledged to “fight for Hoosier (Indiana) values, not DC values,” even though his brother is first in line to the presidency.