By Makenna Mays, Staff Writer

As part of his Summer of Solutions tour, U.S. Senator Mike Braun made a stop in Franklin County at the VFW on Thursday, August 29.

Braun said he tries to do events like this every year and get around to all 92 counties in Indiana.

“This looks a lot like where I'm from,” said Braun.

Braun was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2018, defeating Democratic incumbent Joe Donnelly. He is from the southwest part of Indiana and previously ran as a state legislator and served on a school board for 10 years. He was elected as a State Representative in 2014 and served until 2017. Braun is also the founder and CEO of Meyer Distributing and the owner of Meyer Logistics.

Before Braun gave his speech, he was able to interact with elected officials and other members of the public to hear their ideas and express their concerns which Braun said is one of his favorite parts of events like these. Braun said he hears a lot of honesty in their concerns, and it helps him to confirm he is focusing his efforts on the right things such as the budget, border security, cost of healthcare and agriculture. In the Senate, Braun serves on the Aging Committee, Agriculture Committee, Budget Committee, Environment and Public Works Committee and the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

Braun said his ideas and goals are almost in lockstep with what he heard in his discussions with people in the county. A lot of Braun's speech was focused on healthcare and border security. Braun said nobody should go broke because they have a bad accident or get sick and is working to repeal and replace Obama-care. Braun also weighed in on insurance and his belief is there should be no networks or surprise medical billing when it comes to insurance.

Some questions were asked about border security and the building of a border wall, a project started by the Trump Administration. The construction of a protective barrier has already partially begun, but Braun said he didn't believe a full wall would get built other than what is currently in place.

“I don't think you need a wall from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean,” said Braun.

Braun said there needed to be more legal immigration, but that can't be done when there are no rules on how to keep the border secure. Braun said there only needed to be a protective barrier in high security areas, and the rest can be done through smart management.

During Braun's tour, he also made stops in Liberty, Batesville and Richmond.