GOP aiming for longtime Democratic NW Indiana US House seat

Nov 7, 2022, 12:00 PM | Updated: Nov 8, 2022, 9:27 pm
U.S. Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind., kisses his wife Jane, during an election night party Tuesday, Nov. 8...

U.S. Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind., kisses his wife Jane, during an election night party Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Merrillville, Ind. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

(AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

              U.S. Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind., kisses his wife Jane, during an election night party Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Merrillville, Ind. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
            
              Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind, right, listens to construction workers on Oct. 12, 2022 at the work site near where the new 11th Street Station will be constructed as part of NICTD's Double Track NWI project in Michigan City, Ind. The $491.12 million project will include a second set of tracks from Gary to Michigan City, dramatically reducing commute time to Chicago. (Donovan Barrier/La Porte County Herald-Dispatch via AP)
            
              U.S. Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind., poses for a selfie with supporters during an election night party Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Merrillville, Ind. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
            
              U.S. Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind., acknowledges the applause of supporters and his wife Jane, right, during an election night party Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Merrillville, Ind. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
            
              FILE - Jennifer-Ruth Green, the Republican candidate for Indiana's 1st Congressional District and an U.S. Air Force veteran listens during a roundtable meeting Oct. 20, 2022, in Gary, Ind. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty, File)
            
              Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind, right, listens to construction workers on Oct. 12, 2022 at the work site near where the new 11th Street Station will be constructed as part of NICTD's Double Track NWI project in Michigan City, Ind. The $491.12 million project will include a second set of tracks from Gary to Michigan City, dramatically reducing commute time to Chicago. (Donovan Barrier/La Porte County Herald-Dispatch via AP)
            
              FILE - Jennifer-Ruth Green, the Republican candidate for Indiana's 1st Congressional District and an U.S. Air Force veteran listens during a roundtable meeting Oct. 20, 2022, in Gary, Ind. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty, File)
            
              Rep. Frank Mrvan, D-Ind, right, listens to construction workers on Oct. 12, 2022 at the work site near where the new 11th Street Station will be constructed as part of NICTD's Double Track NWI project in Michigan City, Ind. The $491.12 million project will include a second set of tracks from Gary to Michigan City, dramatically reducing commute time to Chicago. (Donovan Barrier/La Porte County Herald-Dispatch via AP)
            
              FILE - Jennifer-Ruth Green, the Republican candidate for Indiana's 1st Congressional District and an U.S. Air Force veteran listens during a roundtable meeting Oct. 20, 2022, in Gary, Ind. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty, File)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — In Tuesday’s election, Republicans were hoping to take a northwestern Indiana congressional seat that has been a Democratic stronghold since the 1930s in the GOP-dominated state.

National Republicans targeted first-term Democratic Rep. Frank Mrvan for defeat as part of their push toward regaining a majority in the closely divided U.S. House, throwing their support behind Jennifer-Ruth Green, a Black U.S. Air Force veteran.

Meanwhile, Republicans won election for two open U.S. House seats from heavily GOP Indiana districts.

Democrats have typically won the 1st District, which hugs Indiana’s Lake Michigan shoreline near Chicago, by large margins, but former President Donald Trump closed the gap by appealing to working class voters in the district that has some of the country’s largest steel mills.

Mrvan easily won election in 2020 over a perennial Republican candidate with the endorsement of retiring 18-term Democratic Rep. Pete Visclosky and strong labor union support. Mrvan faced a tougher time this year as outside political groups linked to both parties each poured millions of dollars into TV ads in the district.

Green, who would become the GOP’s only Black female House member if she wins, touted herself as a Trump supporter during the Republican primary campaign but has backed away from talking about him in recent months. Utah’s Mia Love became the first Black Republican woman in Congress with her 2014 victory. She lost her reelection bid in 2018.

The 1st District is the only one of Indiana’s nine congressional districts that appears to have the potential to change political hands this election, although two new House members were elected.

Republican former state Sen. Erin Houchin won in southern Indiana’s 9th Congressional District to replace GOP Rep. Trey Hollingsworth, who unexpectedly announced in January he wouldn’t seek reelection after three terms.

Voters in northern Indiana’s solidly Republican 2nd District picked Rudy Yakym as the successor to GOP Rep. Jackie Walorski, who was killed along with two staff members in an August highway crash.

Yakym, an executive with Elkhart logistics company Kem Krest who was endorsed by Walorski’s husband, won a vote among Republican precinct committee members to replace Walorski on the ballot. With Yakym’s win over Democrat Paul Steury, a high school science teacher from Goshen, and Libertarian William Henry, he could be sworn into office in the coming days to complete Walorski’s term through the rest of this year and then start a full two-year term in January.

___

Follow AP’s coverage of the elections at: https://apnews.com/hub/2022-midterm-elections. Check out https://apnews.com/hub/explaining-the-elections to learn more about the issues and factors at play in the 2022 midterm elections.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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GOP aiming for longtime Democratic NW Indiana US House seat