Donald Trump & Joe Biden Have A New Competitor In The Presidential Race, As Rep. Justin Amash Declares He's Running Third Party
It looks like President Donald Trump and presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden will have to face another competitor in the Presidential race this fall. Representative Justin Amash, an Independent from Michigan, has officially announced that he has launched an exploratory committee and is considering a run for President on the Libertarian Party ticket.
Amash was first elected to Congress in 2010 as part of the Tea Party wave of freshmen that year, but he left the Republican Party in 2019 because they were supporting President Trump despite the Constitutional violations. Earlier this year, he voted to impeach President Trump.
The 40-year-old explained that the two-party system is ruining the country, and the majority of people in America don’t support either one.
“The two-party system has evolved into an existential threat to American principles and institutions,” he wrote in the Washington Post on July 4, 2019. “The parties value winning for its own sake, and at whatever cost.”
Even though Amash left the Republican party, he is far from being a Democrat. Like many Americans, he’s an independent who doesn’t fall in line with either party’s ideology. This has led to criticism from both sides, with both ultimately slamming Amash for possibly stealing votes from their guy.
“Make no mistake, the viewpoints held by Biden and the Democratic Party are far, far to the left of the viewpoints held by Justin Amash,” says Mark Sanford, a former South Carolina congressman.. “This is a no-man’s land Justin lives in. He doesn’t think Trump belongs in office. But why would he want to throw the election to the Democrats? Think about the Supreme Court. Think about regulation. Think about these issues he really cares about. That makes no sense, either.”
Amash told Politico that there are differences in tone between President Trump and a potential President Biden. But, he doesn’t think there are differences between the Republican and Democratic parties to the extent that people think there are.
“When you get on the wrong side of people on the left, a lot of it sounds like things I hear from people on the right. I mean, it’s very similar. Everyone wants to immunize themselves and say that the other side is so terrible and our side is so good, and that’s just not true. There are differences in degrees, but they’re not that different in kind,” said Amash.
He explained that is what created Trump, and people are continuing to misidentify the problem. Amash says the POTUS is a creature of this system where everyone is hyperpartisan and hates each other, and where everyone is constantly told that if they don’t vote for their party’s nominee, then they are selling everyone out to those who want to destroy the country.
“And that’s what both sides are told. The Democrats are told that and the Republicans are told that, and we got Trump precisely because people were told, ‘You must vote for him or else. Don’t worry about the fact that he’s bad. Just vote for him. He’ll be better than the other side,” said Amash.
Now, he says the same thing is coming from Democrats about Biden. He says that voters are told not to worry about the concerns they may have about Biden because the most important thing is he has to beat Trump.
“This mentality is really dangerous. And we need to fight it. I don’t believe most Americans hold those views. I spend a lot of time talking to regular people. Most Americans are not partisans like that,” said Amash.
The biggest battle for Justin Amash will be getting on the ballot in all 50 states, and getting enough press during the COVID-19 pandemic to show up in polling so he can be part of any debates that could take place in the fall.
“What you see on Twitter and Facebook and in the halls of Congress and at White House press conferences is not America. Most people are actually pretty kind, compassionate, they are not super partisan,” said Amash. “They’re not super angry about people who have different views. They don’t have a lot of choices right now because they’re stuck with these two parties. And we’ve let a small group in each party control the entire system and tell us who’s going to be our president, who are going to be our elected officials. And we have to challenge that. And I want to lead that effort right now.”