The nation’s first and only Libertarian member of Congress appears unlikely to seek re-election to his current position.
U.S. Rep. Justin Amash (L-MI), the former Republican who gained national prominence for his outspoken criticism of President Donald Trump, signaled this week that he would not be campaigning for another term, as reported by The Hill.
“This is my choice”
“I love representing our community in Congress,” Amash tweeted on Thursday. “I always will. This is my choice, but I’m still going to miss it. Thank you for your trust.”
His message came on the heels of an article in The Detroit News that predicted Amash would sit out the upcoming election.
The piece cited an unnamed Amash aide who said the congressman’s campaign had been “idled” since February as he considered, but ultimately decided against, running as a Libertarian Party candidate for president.
“He hasn’t been campaigning for any office and doesn’t plan to seek the nomination for any office,” Poppy Nelson, an adviser to Amash, confirmed to the outlet.
According to The Detroit News, Amash raised just $24,200 in the quarter ending on June 30, a tiny fraction of the $1.1 million he raised toward his re-election during the previous quarter.
“Appears increasingly unstable”
After officially joining the Libertarian Party in April, however, it seems Amash might not be completely finished with politics. Speculation has swirled in recent weeks that he could run for a different office, including Michigan’s governor.
While Libertarian Party members are sure to be disappointed in the loss of the party’s first elected U.S. congressman, the Trump administration is not likely to shed any tears when he exits office in January.
He has been a thorn in the side of the White House at several key points throughout the president’s first time.
Nearly a year ago, Amash tweeted that he believed Trump “appears increasingly unstable” and urged voters to “elect someone who will restore respect for our Constitution and each other.”
While he does not appear to be throwing his hat in the ring for another term in Congress, it seems unlikely that he will fade into the background. There are, after all, plenty of forums available for former elected officials — especially those willing to criticize Trump.