July '19

Issue link: https://nbm.uberflip.com/i/1132225

Contents of this Issue


Page 133 of 156

rv-pro.com July 2019 • RV PRO • 125 RV PRO: What, specifically, prompted you to step away from your business to run for U.S. Senate representing the state of Indiana? Braun: I was an armchair politician for many years, complaining about this place (Washington, D.C.). I had to nav- igate a business, face a lot of the imped- iments it puts in front of you. Back in '08, my two sons started working for the company and they stuck with it and liked it and did a heckuva job, along with a great young executive team. … About that time, I had become a state rep interested in infrastructure. Southern Indiana lacks it. I thought Indiana, as the Crossroads of America, needed to do some- thing long-term to make sure we repair our roads and bridges and did that as a reason to run for state rep. I was able to co-author the long-term road funding bill and get a regional development authority bill that promotes local skin in the game that lets you get priority on projects if you're willing to help pay for it. I was not going to run for a third term but come back to the company and other stuff I like to do in the private sector, but then I saw the race shaping up for the Senate seat. I didn't like the idea that it was going to take a lifestyle change of being a frequent flyer between where I live and Washington, D.C. – but for me – it was now or never. I still have a lot of energy. I have been complaining about the place for a long time. I thought more of us need to step up out of our comfort zone and do it. Even though I started with 1 percent in the first opinion poll, I had a plan and I think I executed it well. Now, I'm all dressed up and ready to go … RV PRO: You've touted your role as a businessman as an asset that you bring to Congress. How, specifically, Braun greets diners at a small restaurant in Indiana. During his campaign for the U.S. Senate, he was known for favoring blue shirts with rolled up sleeves versus suits and for promoting himself as a businessman and a political outsider. A young Mike Braun (left) is pictured with then candidate for senator Richard Lugar in this photo from the early 1970s at a meeting of young Republicans. (Lugar would go on to serve in the U.S. Senate representing Indiana from 1977 to 2013.) Braun's interest in politics dates back decades.

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

view archives of RV PRO - July '19