Michigan Rep. Justin Amash, who fled the Republican Party last year amid his denunciations of President Donald Trump, said Saturday that he is ending his exploration of a presidential campaign.
Amash announced last month he was considering a pursuit of the Libertarian Party’s nomination for president. In 2016, a Libertarian ticket of former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson and former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld won about 3 percent of the national popular vote, according to The New York Times.
“After much reflection, I’ve concluded that circumstances don’t lend themselves to my success as a candidate for president this year, and therefore I will not be a candidate,” Amash tweeted Saturday. “This was a difficult decision for me, especially having seen grassroots supporters put so much effort into this campaign. It’s been humbling and awesome.”
“I continue to believe that a candidate from outside the old parties, offering a vision of government grounded in liberty and equality, can break through in the right environment. But this environment presents extraordinary challenges,” he added.
Amash then cited why everything was against him, from the media to the attitudes of most Americans to the various lockdowns across the nation.
“Polarization is near an all-time high. Electoral success requires an audience willing to consider alternatives, but both social media and traditional media are dominated by voices strongly averse to the political risks posed by a viable third candidate,” he tweeted.
“The new reality of social distancing levels the playing field among the candidates in many respects, but it also means lesser known candidates are more dependent on adequate media opportunities to reach people.”
“Today, most Americans are understandably more interested in what life will look like tomorrow than they are in broader policy debates, and news coverage has reflected those priorities. At the same time, fundraising challenges posed by an idled economy will hinder advertising,” Amash said.