The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) believes it can flip Michigan’s 3rd Congressional District blue after Rep. Justin Amash announced he no longer identifies as a Republican.
A memo released Thursday by the DCCC identifies the district as a “battleground” area along with 32 other districts Democrats believe they can turn blue.
“In recent years, though, I’ve become disenchanted with party politics and frightened by what I see from it. The two-party system has evolved into an existential threat to American principles and institutions,” Amash, the district’s current congressman, wrote in a Washington Post op-ed detailing his decision to leave the GOP.
Amash will run as an Independent, which makes the DCCC believe it can flip the district since it will create a three-way race. In 2018, the Democratic candidate Cathy Albro received 43.2 percent of the vote against Amash. Democrats believe this is “more than enough to beat a split Republican vote.”
A June poll showed current Michigan State Rep. Jim Lower beating Amash in a Republican primary by 16 points.
The memo also points to the success Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and former President Barack Obama had in the district. “Whitmer nearly won the district in 2018, earning 49.1 percent of the major party vote. President Obama carried MI-03 in 2008, winning 50.4 percent,” the memo states.
The Cook Political Book, which the DCCC cites in its memo, identifies the district as a “toss up.”
“Michigan’s 3rd CD — once represented by Gerald Ford — has long been a Republican seat, but in recent years it’s grown more professional and competitive. In 2016, Trump took just 52 percent there, a hair under Mitt Romney’s 53 percent,” the Cook Political Book said in a recent article.
Republicans have long dominated the district and have represented it since 1993. Amash himself has been the representative since 2011. Only two Democrats have represented Michigan’s 3rd District since 1965.
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