Lansing (Great Lakes News) – Michigan Congressman Tim Walberg has announced that he will seek re-election in 2020. Walberg represents MIchigan’s 7th congressional district which constitutes a large portion of south-eastern Michigan.
“I haven’t filed yet officially, but I’m running,” Walberg said. “We’re seeing some retirements take place now, there’s been some rumors. I am not leaving. It is time to support this president as he starts his second term. I think we’re going to have some exciting times.”
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Walberg’s announcement gives the Michigan Republicans some stability during a particularly difficult summer for unity. With the most discussed example being Rep. Justin Amash’s decision to leave the Republican party and open Michigan’s 3rd congressional district to a crowded primary. The announcement put a national spotlight on a consistently Republican district.
Michigan Republicans took another blow to their election security by losing Rep. Paul Mitchell to retirement at the end of his term. He currently represents Michigan’s 10th congressional district, which is solidly Republican and carried president Donald Trump by 32 points. Mitchell announced, in an interview with Politico, that he will not be seeking re-election in 2020 so that he can spend more personal time with 9-year-old son who has special needs. Mitchell also cited his distaste for political life in Washington as a reason for retirement.
“You look at the rhetoric and vitriol, it overwhelms policy, politics becomes the norm,” Mitchell told Politico. “Everything’s about politics. Everything’s about an election. That’s not why I came here.”
Rep. Fred Upton, who represents Michigan’s 6th congressional district, also showed a potential rift in the Republican party by being one of the four Republicans who voted for the House resolution to denounce Trump’s tweets targeted at “The Squad” as racist. While other Michigan Republicans voted in favor of the president, Upton’s break could indicate a potential retirement. Two of the other Republicans who voted for the resolution, Rep. Will Hurd from Texas and Rep. Susan W. Brooks of Indiana, have already announced their retirement. Hurd was once widely considered a rising star in the Republican party, and is currently the only black Republican in the House of Representatives. Susan W. Brooks was one of the first Republicans to announce retirement earlier in the summer. In the last three weeks, seven Republican members of the House have announced their retirement.
Walberg voted against the resolution, and is an outspoken supporter of the president. He never spoke out against the Trump campaign during the 2016 election, even while Gov. Rick Snyder and two of Walberg’s fellow representatives joined the “Never Trump” movement. With Walberg running again in 2020, Republicans can safely expect him to retain his incumbent advantage and gives them one less district to worry about in what is shaping up to be a hard fought and expensive election.