May 22, 2019

Big GOP donors turn on Justin Amash over Trump impeachment comments

Rep. Justin Amash. Photo: Bill Clark/Getty Images

Michigan's influential and wealthy DeVos family will cease its support for Rep. Justin Amash, turning on the fifth-term Republican lawmaker after he tweeted that President Trump has engaged in "impeachable conduct," the Detroit News reported on Wednesday.

Why it matters: The backlash Amash has faced since his Saturday tweets, including condemnation from his own House Freedom Caucus, serves as evidence of the perils of criticizing Trump as a member of the Republican party. Within days of Amash's Twitter attack, the Michigan lawmaker earned himself a new primary challenger — state Rep. Jim Lower, a loyal pro-Trump conservative, per the Detroit News.

Context: To date, the DeVos family — hailing from Amash's west-central Michigan district — has contributed $65,000 to Amash's primary and general campaigns, The Daily Beast reports. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was required to conclude her own political giving when she took her position in the Trump administration, but other DeVos family members continued their considerable fundraising efforts.

  • Amash — who the New York Times recently described as "a libertarian with a contrarian streak that earned him the nickname 'Mr. No'" — opposed Trump's nomination in 2016. The lawmaker sides with the president on roughly 62% of issues and votes, the lowest among any Republican in Congress, per ABC News.

What's next: Amash has floated the idea of running as a third-party candidate to challenge Trump in 2020, according to the Daily Beast.

Go deeper: Trump attacks Republican Justin Amash for endorsing impeachment

Go deeper

Biden formally secures Democratic presidential nomination

Joe Biden speaks at Delaware State University's student cente on June 5. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden became the formal Democratic presidential nominee on Friday evening, per AP.

The big picture: Biden has been the presumptive frontrunner to take on President Trump since Sen. Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign in early April.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 6,724.516 — Total deaths: 394,018 — Total recoveries — 2,996,832Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 1,894,753 — Total deaths: 109,042 — Total recoveries: 491,706 — Total tested: 19,231,444Map.
  3. Public health: WHCA president says White House violated social-distancing guidelines to make reporters "a prop" — Jailing practices contribute to spread.
  4. Sports: How coronavirus could reshuffle the sports calendar.
  5. Jobs: Better-than-expected jobs report boosts stock market.
  6. Media: The Athletic lays off 8% of staff, implements company-wide pay cut.

Scoop: German foreign minister to travel to Israel with warning on annexation

Heiko Maas. Photo: Michael Kappeler/picture alliance via Getty Images

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas is expected to travel to Israel next week to warn that there will be consequences if Israeli leaders move forward with plans to annex parts of the West Bank, Israeli officials and European diplomats tell me.

Why it matters: Israeli and European officials agree that if Israel goes ahead with unilateral annexation, the EU will respond with sanctions.