Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) has signaled that he’s not backing down to President Donald Trump‘s attacks, as he said he has not ruled out running for president as a third-party Libertarian Party candidate.
This past weekend, Amash became the first (and currently only) GOP congressman to actively make a case for Trump’s impeachment, and his opinion was not met with much grace from his party, He was bashed by many Republicans, including House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Trump himself.
Watch Amash’s response to GOP condemnation below:
"I think it's a process and it's something that should be begun."
— ABC News (@ABC) May 21, 2019
However, this has not stopped him from continuing to explain why he believes impeaching Trump is the best option — specifically to a group of students.
Wow: @justinamash is NOT backing down. He is now talking to a school group on steps of the Capitol about why Trump impeachment proceedings should begin. “Really dangerous for our country” when ppl don’t tell the truth pic.twitter.com/JYhKMtjhuk
— Bo Erickson (@BoKnowsNews) May 21, 2019
Amash has faced more criticism than just harsh words from a few, as “over 30 members” of the House Freedom Caucus unanimously voted to condemn him, according to Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio). He also found a pro-Trump GOP challenger in his district almost immediately after his rebuke of the president.
However, being the first Republican congressman to support impeachment has given Amash a unique opportunity at the spotlight, and he is already being asked by reporters whether he’s going to run for president as a third-party candidate on the Libertarian Party ticket.
When The Hill asked the congressman of his 2020 candidacy thoughts, he did not dismiss the chance of it:
“I’m just focused on defending the Constitution, it’s not something I’ve thought about. I don’t take things off the table like that, but it’s not something at the forefront of my considerations right now. I’m just focused on my job. I wouldn’t take running for governor off the table or Senate or statehouse. I don’t take things off the table.”
Although former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld has announced a primary challenge against Trump, Amash is the first potential third-party contender, which could be a lot more detrimental to Trump’s chances at winning a very purple Michigan or even the re-election as a whole.
For those who believe that libertarians or GOP “Never Trumpers” don’t make up a substantial voter base in the country, Libertarian National Committee chairman Nicholas Sarwark would tell you otherwise.
“There are a lot of Libertarian Party members actively encouraging Rep. Amash to switch parties and seek the Libertarian nomination,” Sarwark told The Hill. “This is probably the most organized recruitment effort I’ve seen going back to 2012 when people were trying to recruit [former Rep.] Ron Paul.”