MI-03 candidates’ stances on impeachment

With a crowded field of candidates, those vying for the MI-03 congressional seat have to respond to today’s biggest news story: impeachment. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi D-Calif. announced that the House Democrats would begin an impeachment inquiry on Sept. 24. This followed after a whistleblower in the intelligence community reported that President Donald Trump pressured the Ukrainian president to investigate the son of former vice president and current Democratic candidate Joe Biden.

Here’s where they and Calvin Democrats and Republicans stand on impeachment.

Justin Amash (I) — Is for impeachment.

The incumbent representative and current candidate made headlines in May and July when he announced that he believed President Trump’s conduct was impeachable and that he was leaving the Republican party. Amash is currently the only non-Democrat in Congress in favor of impeachment. On Sept. 25, he tweeted, following the release of the transcript of Trump’s phone call with the Ukrainian president, “Yesterday, I had expected the WH to release an unremarkable transcript to distract from the main issues: the whistleblower complaint and other abuses. Today, it released a highly incriminating transcript, and it seems POTUS doesn’t know the difference between right and wrong.”

Lynn Afendoulis (R)Is against impeachment.

An M-Live article notes that Lynn Afendoulis, current M-73 Representative, stated “I want to be supportive of what’s happening, and not a contrarian,” referring to the president. According to M-Live, this was referencing Amash and his support for impeachment. 

Amanda Brunzell (D)— Is for impeachment.

In a statement to Chimes, Brunzell explained how their background in the military influenced why they want Congress to proceed with impeachment investigations. “As a veteran, I am still well connected with the Intelligence and National Security communities. There is a consensus that what the whistleblower has brought forth is evidence Donald Trump has endangered national security,” they wrote. “I can’t ignore that, and after reading the complaint myself I came to the conclusion that at face value it’s obvious that we need more information.”

Nick Colvin (D)— Is for impeachment.

Colvin, an Obama staffer,  also worked as an attorney. In a Facebook post on Sept. 24, he said, “The facts are unambiguous and the corruption clear. The President of the United States has admitted that he and his personal attorney pressured the president of the Ukraine(sic) to use his foreign power to interfere in our elections… The time for articles of impeachment is now.”

Joel Langlois (R)Is against impeachment.

Joel Langlois, a West Michigan businessman, tweeted on Sept. 25 a commitment to Trump as well as an attack against Amash. The tweet reads, “Amash has been one of the biggest advocates for impeachment. He would rather work with Pelosi than with President Trump. It’s time for new leadership, and as a congressman I will stand with our president, support his agenda, and work to get things done.” Another tweet on the same date states, “Pelosi and the Democrats continue their obsession over impeaching the President because they’re unable to challenge him on his policies and accomplishments. We’d be better off if they’d put this effort into the important issues and working hard on behalf of the people.” A Facebook post on the same day relayed the same sentiments and began with, “LIKE if you agree the impeachment inquiry is a waste of time and taxpayer dollars.” The post has 1.3 thousand reactions. 

James Lower (R)Is against impeachment.

In a statement to Chimes, current D-70 Rep. James Lower noted how Democrats have been seeking President Trump’s impeachment since his election. “Since before President Trump took office, Democrats and his political opponents have been protesting his election and trying to find any means necessary to oppose his presidency. Our current Congressman, Justin Amash, and Democrats in the US House failed to find any evidence of collision or obstruction with the Mueller investigation. Now, they are trying to come up with a new justification for impeaching our President.” Lower also noted his reasons for running for Congress stating, “one of my top priorities will be working to actually get important priorities for our Country done, rather than simply working to destroy our President. I find this impeachment charade to be sad, divisive, and unnecessary.” 

Peter Meijer (R)Is against impeachment.

Peter Meijer retweeted Representative Dan Crenshaw and Jack Posobiec, a host for One America News. Posobiec’s tweet implies that Democrats made allegations without concrete grounds for impeachment. Crenshaw states in his tweet, “the Democrats’ true intentions have always been impeaching the President.”

Tom Norton (R) 

Is against impeachment.

Tom Norton, Afghan War veteran, expressed his opinion towards President Trump’s impeachment inquiry through his campaign’s Twitter. On Sept. 24, he tweeted, “#Democrats want @realDonaldTrump #Impeached for something @JoeBiden actually did. It’s time we stand and fight for America!” During a phone conversation with Chimes, Norton expressed that Trump’s impeachment inquiry is “politically motivated.” He further explained that Joe Biden should be prosecuted if Trump is impeached. 

Emily Rafi (D)— Could not be reached for comment.

Hillary Scholten (D)Is for impeachment.

In a Facebook post on Sept. 26, the former immigration lawyer and Obama Justice Department lawyer said, “Every day, new revelations and evidence come to light that have made it clear that the President should be impeached… For the safety of our country, and the integrity of our electoral process, the President needs to be held accountable.”


In addition to candidates, Chimes reached out to Calvin Democrats and Republicans. Their statements are below.

Calvin Republicans: 

Did not state view on impeachment.

Kennedy Genzink, president of the Calvin University Republicans states, “At this time, the Calvin Republicans feel that it is not appropriate to comment on the matter of the impeachment inquiry of President Trump until further information is available to the general public.”

Calvin Democrats:

Are for impeachment.

Lorrayya Williams, president of the Calvin University Democrats, sent Chimes this statement: “We the Calvin Democrats believe that our democracy has the capacity to bring about justice and to hold even those in the highest office accountable for their actions. The current administration is not exempt from that. We hope that the impeachment hearings will again give the American people faith in that.”


Note: Hillary Scholten is married to Chimes’ advisor Jesse Holcomb. Holcomb had no role in writing, editing, or reviewing this piece.