Does Justin Amash Have an Ulterior Motive?
Does Justin Amash Have an Ulterior Motive?
On July 4, Independence Day, Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan declared his independence from the Republican party. Not that the party oppressed him or anything. But he can’t accept the two-party system anymore, so now he wants a divorce.
Today, I’m declaring my independence.https://t.co/4e5TeVtGRK
— Justin Amash (@justinamash) July 4, 2019
Amash wrote in an op-ed for the Washington Post:
“In recent years, though, I’ve become disenchanted with party politics and frightened by what I see from it. The two-party system has evolved into an existential threat to American principles and institutions.”
“Today, I am declaring my independence and leaving the Republican Party. No matter your circumstance, I’m asking you to join me in rejecting the partisan loyalties and rhetoric that divide and dehumanize us.”
In other words, Amash wants you to leave the Republican party, too. Now do you think loyal Democrats will follow suit? Yeah, fat chance.
Certainly Amash is disheartened by the Republican party, for which he had high hopes. However, what’s also behind this is his contempt for President Trump. As you may recall, he was the only one to call for his impeachment, which tickled the ears of Rep. Rashida Tlaib, who invited him to cosponsor her impeachment resolution.
And now Amash’s divorce from the Republican party has made Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez do a Happy Dance, too.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) July 4, 2019
Never mind that AOC despises conservatives — when it comes to Justin Amash, the enemy of her enemy is her friend.
Plus the mainstream media was pretty excited about the Michigan congressman going rogue as well.
However, President Trump responded to Amash in his typical, um, colorful manner:
Great news for the Republican Party as one of the dumbest & most disloyal men in Congress is “quitting” the Party. No Collusion, No Obstruction! Knew he couldn’t get the nomination to run again in the Great State of Michigan. Already being challenged for his seat. A total loser!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 4, 2019
So why is Justin Amash leaving the GOP? Moreover, does he have some ulterior motive?
A conservative friend, who personally knows Amash as an acquaintance, believes that he’s simply disillusioned. Now I get that — he took office in 2011 at the height of the Tea Party movement. He, like many of us, thought that adherence to constitutionalism could change the course of politics in Washington DC.
And how well did that work out?
However, Rep. Trey Gowdy also decided to bow out, but he made the choice to leave politics in general, not the party. Instead he joined a law firm in his home state of South Carolina, and when asked if he would return to politics, he said this:
“There’s no way I’ll return to it. I’m not going to lobby. And if I enjoyed politics, I wouldn’t be leaving.”
Now while Gowdy also seemed to be dillusioned with politics, he left that circus behind. But Amash — not so much.
In fact, there’s talk of him running for president as a Libertarian. Moreover, he’s hinted at it.
When asked if would consider running a third party campaign against Trump after his call for impeachment, Amash responded that “I haven’t ruled anything out.” Although he added that he doesn’t want to play “spoiler.”
“When I run for something, I run to win.”
Well, of course he’s going to say that.
But some Libertarians seem to be quite pumped about the prospect of Justin Amash running as their standard bearer. Perhaps it’s because he now has more name recognition. Plus, he may be the most sane of the Libertarians who’ve declared for 2020.
Right now they include, among others:
And you thought Marianne Williamson had a screw loose.
Now if Amash ran as a Libertarian, I’m positive he’d be a shoo-in for their nomination. But what would that do for Trump’s run? Would he pull off enough voters to prevent Trump’s re-election?
That’s my biggest concern. Oh, the handful of Never Trumpers who eagerly consume The Bulwark would get a thrill up their legs to vote for Amash. But independents who are turned off by Trump’s rhetoric may also find the less-animated congressman more to their liking. Plus, low information voters who believe stories about women detainees drinking toilet water might find him more palatable, too. Especially if the Democratic nominee is too far leftwing for their liking (and that person will be far left. Trust me.)
But would that win Justin Amash the presidency? No, not by a long shot. But it may be just enough to siphon off votes for Trump. And then it’s hello, President Harris. Or President Biden. Maybe even President Warren.
Makes your skin crawl, doesn’t it?