Trump-Backed John Gibbs Triumphs Over Pro-Impeachment Republican Incumbent
One of the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach then-President Donald Trump after the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol incursion was defeated in a Republican primary on Tuesday.
Republican Rep. Peter Meijer, who represents Michigan’s 3rd Congressional District, lost to John Gibbs, whom Trump had endorsed.
As of 7 a.m. Wednesday, with 88 percent of the votes counted, Gibbs led 52 percent to 48 percent, according to the Detroit Free Press.
Gibbs, a former software developer who served in the Trump administration as acting assistant secretary in the Department of Housing and Urban Development, thanked the former president for his support early Wednesday.
Just got a call from President Trump, congratulating me and my team on tonight’s big win! Thank you, Mr. President for your support! pic.twitter.com/43BZfvqBEo
— John Gibbs for MI-3 (@votejohngibbs) August 3, 2022
Another Trump-endorsed candidate, Tudor Dixon, won the state’s GOP gubernatorial primary.
“Fantastic night in Michigan! Tudor Dixon will be a great Governor. John Gibbs WON with a big surge in the end. Not a good time for Impeachers – 7 down, 3 to go! Thank you Michigan!” the former president said in a TruthSocial post.
Trump’s comment referred to the fact that of the 10 lawmakers who supported his impeachment, seven – through defeats or retirements – will not be back in Congress, according to Politico. Reps. Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington, whose primary was too close to call early Wednesday, and Liz Cheney of Wyoming face primaries. Rep. David Valadao of California survived a general primary to make it to the general election.
His endorsement was crucial for Gibbs, who worked under HUD Secretary Ben Carson in the Trump administration.
Loud cheers at the John Gibbs campaign watch party as he retakes the lead over Rep. Peter Meijer.
Gibbs is up by just 923 votes (1.6%) with 73% of the vote in. @WOODTV pic.twitter.com/IgSyjipPhP
— Byron Tollefson (@byron_tollefson) August 3, 2022
“John Gibbs is a fabulous talent who loves the State, our Military, and our Vets. He will always protect our Second Amendment, our Southern Border, and the Police—there will be no defunding with John!” Trump said in his November endorsement.
Thank you for the endorsement President Trump! It was an honor to serve in your administration and you can bet I’ll continue the fight in Congress! pic.twitter.com/O5bM9phh5q
— John Gibbs for MI-3 (@votejohngibbs) November 15, 2021
Meijer conceded the race just before 2 a.m. local time.
“This was a hard-fought primary campaign and I want to thank everyone in west Michigan for their support. … I also want to congratulate my opponent, John Gibbs, on his victory tonight,” he said, according to the Free Press.
The race included a tactic Democrats have used before of labeling the Trump-backed candidate as more conservative in hopes of boosting his vote totals on the grounds that the more conservative candidate might be less likely to win a general election.
Democrats spent $425,000 in ads that supported Gibbs. The two sides viewed that very differently.
“The DCCC boosting John Gibbs is clear evidence of who Nancy Pelosi prefers in this race,” Meijer spokeswoman Emily Taylor said.
“I don’t know what they’re doing or not doing, it really doesn’t matter to me,” Gibbs said. “I think we’re ahead anyway.”
Gibbs is a Lansing, Michigan, native who worked on the iPhone project for Apple after graduating from Stanford, according to the Detroit News. He later served as a Christian missionary to Japan for seven years.
Gibbs received a master’s in public administration from Harvard University and oversaw homelessness programs and community development block grants while at HUD.
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