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The Race for Michigan’s 7th Congressional District

via GovTrack.us

Michigan’s 7th Congressional District

Republican Congressman Tim Walberg is the U.S. Representative for Michigan’s 7th Congressional District. He sits on the House Oversight And Government Reform Committee where recently, he pressed F.B.I. Director James Comey on his decision to not seek charges against former Secretary of State and Presumptive Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in regards to the controversy over her classified emails. In his questioning, Walberg brings forth a seemingly contradictory statement that Comey made, that a person in Clinton’s position should be aware of sharing sensitive information over an unclassified email server.

 

For the last five years, Walberg has represented the south-east and south-central constituency of Michigan, a population of 700,000 people which includes the cities of Monroe, Adrian, and Hillsdale. He also served a prior term as the 7th Congressional District’s U.S. Representative from 2007 to 2009, but lost his seat to former Democratic Congressman Mark Schauer in the 2008 general election. Schauer in turn lost to Walberg in the next race, and later to Governor Rick Snyder when he ran in the 2014 Michigan gubernatorial race.

Walberg has said the key issues he’s focusing on in this election are growing jobs, creating fiscally responsible budgets, and abolishing Obamacare. A former pastor, Walberg also lists a strong anti-abortion stance as one of his core values. He outlined his objections earlier this year during the 43rd Anniversary of the Roe V. Wade decision.

It didn’t offer freedom,” Walberg said on the House floor. “It didn’t offer opportunity or choice. It offered death and a diminished life to boot.”

Courtesy of Douglas North

Republican Douglas North

Despite repeated attempts, Walberg could not be reached for comment on this story. His opponent in the Republican field, Douglas North from Jackson, says the Congressman has a lot to answer for.

I am told by voters that Congressman Walberg should be charged with treason,” North said. “Because he has broken his word to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America.”

North says Walberg’s support for bills that create a path for the Trans-Pacific Partnership and his acceptance of money from lobbyists should disqualify the congressman from leading the district.

I am told by voters that Congressman Walberg should be charged with treason, because he has broken his word to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America.”

Douglas North, Republican

It’s not the first time North and Walberg have squared off. In the 2014 G.O.P. congressional primary, North lost but did earn nearly 21 percent of the vote. A self-proclaimed radical, North says if elected to office, he will seek to abolish the Federal Reserve, the IRS, and other government entities he says take taxpayer’s money.

The Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Education,” North said. “So many departments were given power to destroy our rights and that is an opportunity for the establishment to just further achieve their agenda.”

[My constituents] feel like their current congressman isn’t listening to them, and that he’s really listening to the people who are funding his campaign, which is really big corporations and special interest.”

State Representative Gretchen Driskell, Democrat

On the other side of the aisle, State Representative Gretchen Driskell hopes to reclaim the congressional seat for the Democratic Party. Recently, Driskell introduced an amendment to the Michigan state constitution that would create a so-called “Voter Bill of Rights”. Running unopposed in her primary contest, the former Mayor of Saline says an increased emphasis on education, governmental transparency, and campaign finance reform are paramount for improving the district.

Eli Newman / WDET

Gretchen Driskell at her Saline campaign office

That’s something that’s a big concern to my constituents,” Driskell said. “They feel like their current congressman isn’t listening to them, and that he’s really listening to the people who are funding his campaign, which is really big corporations and special interest.”

The internet site OpenSecrets.org says Driskell’s campaign is largely supported by labor unions and the education sector, while Walberg’s largest contributions come from the Devos-family’s Amway Inc. company, and Ambassador Bridge owner Matty Moruoun’s CenTra, Inc. North says he is funding his own campaign.

Voters head to the polls for Michigan’s primary election on August 2nd.

Image credit: Eli Newman / WDET

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This post is a part of 2016 Elections: Issues & Candidates.

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About the Author

Eli Newman

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Just a small guy with big ideas. Sharing content and culture at WDET 101.9 FM.

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