‘Trump is no libertarian’: ex-GOP congressman blasts Trump for ‘eroding liberty’ in America
President Donald Trump, Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) -- screenshots

Libertarian Justin Amash took a stand against President Donald J. Trump Monday stating, "Donald Trump wants to win the support of libertarians, but his actual record on expanding the federal government and eroding liberty is appalling.After claiming he would wipe out the national debt in eight years, he signed massive spending increases and created the highest ever federal debt—even before the coronavirus pandemic began. Despite repeating over and over that he wants to end wars and bring home the troops, Trump actually increased our military presence in the Middle East and launched attacks in multiple countries without congressional approval—record strikes in places like Afghanistan and Somalia."

Amash continued, "He also vetoed measures passed by Congress to limit U.S. involvement in Yemen’s civil war, block weapons sales that support it, and prevent war with Iran. More than half of Trump’s vetoes (five of eight) have been against measures trying to limit U.S. military aggression abroad.Trump sometimes acts like he’s opposed to the military-industrial complex, even suggesting the Pentagon wants “to do nothing but fight wars” in order to keep defense contractors happy, but no one has been a bigger booster of the defense industry than Trump."

The lawyer and politican added, "Trump loves to tout his record on criminal justice reform, but he appointed attorneys general that have expanded civil asset forfeiture and ended Department of Justice policies that were intended to limit marijuana enforcement and reduce harsh criminal sentencing. Trump also revived the federal death penalty. He’s executed more people in the last few months than his predecessors had in more than 60 years. He detained an American citizen without charge or trial for over a year."

He later added, "Donald Trump is no libertarian or friend to libertarians. He’s a national populist whose agenda centers around collective identity, not individual rights. We shouldn’t confuse Trump’s anti-establishment rhetoric with anti-establishment actions. He’s been the greatest gift to establishment politicians like Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy, who needed Trump’s celebrity to sell their unpopular schemes to the grassroots of the party. The least principled, least constitutionally aligned members of the GOP now face almost no scrutiny with respect to their policies and records. As long as they say they’re firmly behind Trump, they’re good to go, regardless of how much they grow government or violate our rights. Meanwhile, libertarians have been taken for a ride. It’s been an almost entirely one-way relationship. Libertarians lend their support and credibility to Trump on many issues, while Trump pays them lip service on those issues and makes mostly inconsequential gestures."

He concluded, "If libertarians are to succeed at moving politics in a more liberty-oriented direction, then we must build our own brand as far away from Donald Trump as possible. Libertarianism’s compelling vision for securing individual rights has to get out from under the shadow of Trumpism."

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