Friday, May 1, 2020

Justin Amash: People Want a President 'Who Is Normal, Honest, Practical, Capable.'

By Nick Gillespie - May 01, 2020 at 10:30AM

Five-term Michigan Congressman Justin Amash has announced that he's running for the Libertarian Party's presidential nomination, which will be decided in late May. The 40-year-old son of Middle Eastern immigrants took office in 2011 as a Republican but left the party last July, saying he didn't want to be part of a partisan death spiral. He has consistently voted against corporate bailouts, increases in debt-financed government spending, overseas military interventions, and the prosecution of the federal drug war.

During the coronavirus pandemic, Amash has castigated federal agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and the Food and Drug Administration, first for botching containment efforts and then for asserting monopoly control over testing. He was one of a mere handful of no votes on the $2.2 trillion CARES Act, arguing that all relief payments should go directly to individuals and households rather than corporations, nonprofits, or government agencies.

Republican and Democratic loyalists are lashing out at Amash as a quixotic potential spoiler with no chance of being elected and calling for him to step aside. 

Nick Gillespie talked with Amash over Skype about why he thinks Donald Trump is too erratic to be given a second term, why Joe Biden is too old for a first term, and why he believes his vision of a freer country will take him to victory in November.

Read a transcript of the interview.

Edited by John Osterhoudt. Amash graphics by Lex Villena.

Photo credit: Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America / CC BY-SA (https://ift.tt/UbRXBT); Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call/Newscom; Jeff Malet Photography/Newscom; Keiko Hiromi/AFLO/Newscom; Michael Reynolds/ZUMA Press/Newscom; Graeme Sloan/Sipa USA/Newscom; Mateusz Wlodarczyk / Forum/ZUMA Press/Newscom; Pool/TNS/Newscom; Michael Brochstein/ZUMA Press/Newscom; JOHN ANGELILLO/UPI/Newscom


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