Today, my friend and Michigan state representative (District 72), Justin Amash announced his intention to seek Michigan's 3rd Congressional District seat in the August Republican primary. For fans of liberty all across the country, this is tremendously welcome news. Representative Amash has been an unabashed champion of small government, free markets, and individual liberty during his time in the Michigan House of Representatives.
Amash will likely be challenging 16 year Republican incumbent Vern Ehlers who has not yet announced his intention to run. Ehlers has never been challenged in a primary during his tenure in the House of Representatives and took office (I think) during a special election. Politically, Ehlers is described as a very moderate to liberal Republican on fiscal issues but staunchly pro-life.
Amash announced his candidacy this afternoon and plans a rally in the next week or so. His website is thorough and accurately reflects his values as I have seen in his work in the House. I have followed his voting record carefully over his stay in the House and I can say that it is completely pro-freedom and based on common sense economic theory.
Amash was one of the first representatives to post his salary, benefits, expense account, and the pay of all his office staff online for anyone to access. He turned down the lifetime health care benefits upon leaving office which all Michigan elected representatives and senators qualify for. He has single handedly moved the state Republican party in the direction of ending the terrible Michigan Economic Development Corporation that picks and chooses which businesses can qualify for handouts from the state.
He has introduced legislation to end universal health care in the state of Michigan with a constitutional amendment. He has consistently fought special interests in licensing laws, economic restrictions to competition, and the Michigan Business Tax. Simply put, Amash is the future of the conservative movement within the Republican party (or perhaps the libertarian/conservative wing).
If you are a fan of Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, Rand Paul, Jeff Flake, or Paul Ryan you should be rooting for Justin Amash. The best thing about Amash's run for Congress is that (unlike many who claim to be champions of small government) he has a proven track record and can vouch for being completely committed to liberty. Please visit his site, send him some cash (I know I did), and let's rally America's fighters for liberty to put another champion for liberty in the US House of Representatives!
Justin Amash speaking before the Grand Rapids Tea Party on April 15th, 2009. He was the only legislator to show up. He was there before there was a Republican bandwagon - he was there because he believes in limited government. Here is the video link of his speech.