Tea Party-backed Republican Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) won his primary on Tuesday, and took the opportunity to say what he really thought about his Republican challenger’s “smear campaign.”
At the conclusion of Amash’s victory speech in Grand Rapids, he jabbed “lobbyist” Pete Hoekstra’s conduct while backing challenger Brian Ellis. Hoekstra, a former GOP congressman from Michigan, had failed to win the race for governor in 2010, and lost his House seat in 2012.
“You are a disgrace,” Amash said. “And I’m glad we could hand you one more loss before you fade into total obscurity and irrelevance.”
But Amash saved his most damning criticism for Ellis.
“You owe my family and this community an apology for your disgusting, despicable smear campaign,” he asserted. “You had the audacity to try and call me today after running a campaign that was called the nastiest in the country. I ran for office to stop people like you.”
One of Ellis’ advertisements had suggested that Amash was “Al Qaeda’s best friend in Congress.”
In an interview with WXMI, Amash later explained that Ellis’ campaign was “disgusting” because of the television ad, and because his position on abortion had been misrepresented.
“He put together a TV ad calling me al Qaeda’s best friend in Congress,” Amash said. “That’s about as disgusting and despicable as anyone has ever seen anywhere in the country. And my wife and kids have to go through that when they hear that stuff.”
“I’m an Arab-American, and he has the audacity to say I’m al-Qaeda’s best friend in Congress? That’s pretty disgusting.”
Watch the video below from WXMI, broadcast Aug. 6, 2014.
(h/t: The Washington Post)