Meijer jumps into Michigan GOP Senate primary

MeijerPeter 101420ap

Former Rep. Pete Meijer (R-Mich.) on Monday launched a bid for the U.S. Senate in Michigan, joining a crowded GOP primary for the seat to replace Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) next fall.  

“We are in dark and uncertain times, but we have made it through worse,” he said in a statement, posted on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. “The challenges are great, but so is our country. If we are to see another great American century, we need leaders who aren’t afraid to be bold, will do the work, and can’t be bought.”

Meijer lost his House seat last cycle after a candidate backed by former President Trump defeated him in the Republican primary – a challenge spurred on after Meijer joined nine other House Republicans in voting to impeach Trump following the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol attack. But Meijer’s challenger, John Gibbs, ultimately lost to Rep. Hillary Scholten (D-Mich.).  

Monday’s announcement ends months of speculation over whether Meijer would run. He launched an exploratory committee in August around a potential Senate bid. And last week, Politico reported that Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) notified members of his caucus that the Michigan Republican was getting ready to enter the race.

But the Michigan Republican already faces a challenging terrain as former Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), who was sought after by the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and former Detroit Police Chief James Craig are among some of the names seeking the GOP endorsement. 

Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.) is the most prominent Democrat running, though others seeking the Democratic nomination include actor Hill Harper, former state Rep. Leslie Love (D) and Pamela Pugh, president of the Michigan State Board of Education, among others.  

The nonpartisan election handicapper Cook Political Report rates Stabenow’s seat as “lean Democrat.” 

–Updated at 7:31 a.m.

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