The Race To Take Justin Amash’s Seat In The U.S. House
Justin Amash has been under heavy criticism lately, after being the only Republican to publicly favor the impeachment of President Trump. He has been called a traitor to his party and the president. In the midst of this, he has withdrawn from the Republican Party, and made the announcement that he will run for re-election as an Independent. He claims that our politics are in a death spiral and that we need to reject partisan loyalties. His decisions have been met with some support and some disdain. In the wake of this, opposition has risen to challenge him by running for his seat in U.S. Congress. The general election for this voting will be on November 3rd, 2020, so you have plenty of time to decide who you will be voting for.
Amash won the 2010 election to represent the Third Congressional District of Michigan. Justin went to college at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and earned his juris doctor there as well. He is popular for his usage of social media in his congressional role. He explains his voting reasons on these posts, and maintains his transparency and honesty through these platforms. His values are held within limited government, economic freedom, and civil liberties. A large setback for Amash is the recent loss of a major campaign contributer, the DeVos family. A family spokesperson says the decision comes from “increasing concerns about a lack of representation in the 3rd Congressional District.”
There have been a number of people who have come forward to run for the seat of Justin Amash in the midst of this drama. There are candidates from both parties, claiming different roles in relation to Amash as to why they should be in his place. Many Republicans refer to him as a traitor and want to preserve the conservative values that many in the State District hold. Democrats look to gain support on their end, and change the political position of the seat.
31 year old Peter Meijer is the grandson of Frederik Meijer, the founder of Meijer grocery stores. His objective in running is simple, to get things done. “Our politicians spend their time trashing each other online, coming up with excuses, and pointing fingers,” says Meijer. Meijer served in the as an Army Reserve Sergeant in Iraq and has worked in non-government organizations providing humanitarian efforts, security and assistance in other placess of the world. Meijer has not made any specific comments about Amash, but it seems that he does not agree with Amash’s stance on impeachment of President Trump.
Currently presiding as the representative of the 73rd District in the Michigan House of Representatives, Lynn Afendoulis has chosen to run the the 3rd Congressional District of Michigan. Lynn is the mother of two, and a Grand Rapids native. Her primary focus is targeting immigration reform. As she has said, “we are a nation built on immigrants, I’m a proud product of that.” Afendoulis also has an aim to shrink governement, allowing businesses to thrive. Afendoulis was the first to annouce challening Justin Amash.
Norton is a 36 year old Ada resident. He was the President of the Sand Lake Village Council from 2014 to 2018. Norton was also in the Army National Guard from 2008 to 2014, and aims to protect veterans. One of his primary concerns is the suicide rate amongst veterans, as well as upholding the conservative values of the community. Norton wants to show the people that they have other options amidst Amash’s impeachment tweets. Norton’s statement says, “I want to represent the people, not the politicians.” Norton was the 2nd person to announce his running.
James “Jim” Lower currently represents the 70th District in the Michigan House of Representatives. Lower is a Greenville resident with a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Michigan State University. He successfuly earned his Masters in Business Administration from GVSU. Lower has struck out directly at Amash, noting that in his 10 years in office, the only bill he has put in place was to rename a post office. He also points out that Amash consistently votes against the republican party in congress. Jim was originally was going to make his announcement in July, but chose to do so early. He wants the people to know that he will not turn his back on them, as Amash has done to many.
The owner of the DeltaPlex Arena, Joel Langlois, has chose to run against Justin Amash for his seat in Congress. Langlois has previously has Trump rallies at the arena, which have had tremendous success. The director of the Michigan Trump Campaign in 2016, Scott Hagerstrom, also endorses Langlois in his campaign. Langlois owns several real estate and manufacturing companies, while residing in Grand Rapids. In his words, “we need a local congressman who will stand up for our conservative principles and have the president’s back.”
This will be the first time running for public office for Hillary Scholten, a Hudsonville native. She has spent much of her career working in public service, with a strong focus in immigration. She was a clerk at the immigration unit of the U.S. Cout of Appeals, as well as an advisor on federal immigration for the Obama Administration. Her main focus is to to do the opposite of Amash, particularly in health care reform. This is in reference to Amash voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act. She also has strong stances on protecting drinking water, gun control, and helping public schools.
The first democrat to announce his campaign, Nick Colvin was able to raise more money in 12 days than Justin Amash has in the past 3 months. After studying at Harvard Law, Colvin was an aide to the Obama Administration. His projects as an aide include the auto industry crisis, health care law, and the confirmation of Sonia Sotomayer into the Supreme Court. Nick’s priorities for office are to reduce healthcare and prescription drug costs, as well as fixing bridges and roads in Michigan. He said that these two issues, regardless of political party, affect everyone, and need to be fixed.
Doug Booth is a Health care professional who grew up in Grand Rapids. Life events through recession and tough times are his reasoning for working to make lives better for others. His primary concern is expanding into a universal healthcare system and battle the rising costs of prescription drugs. Booth also has a strong focus on education reform. The United States ranks poorly in overall education compared to other developing and developed nations. Booth also has a moderate stance on gun laws, which some refer to as “common sense” gun laws. This includes expanding background checks and eliminating bump stocks for rifles.
There You Have It
There is a complete list of all the candidates for both parties that are running for the 3rd Congressional District of Michigan. Keep in mind that there is plentyo of time before the elections. Do your homework, learn about each candidate and what they stand for. Choose the one that aligns with your values, and most importantly, VOTE!