Trump-backed Gibbs ousts Meijer in Michigan GOP race for Congress (2022)

Grand Rapids—John Gibbs, theTrump-endorsed challenger to U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer, was victoriousin the nationally watched race ofwest Michigan's 3rd Congressional District.

Trump-backed Gibbs ousts Meijer in Michigan GOP race for Congress (1)

Apolitical appointee informerPresident Donald Trump's Housing and Urban Development agency, Gibbs pitched himself as an ultra-conservativereplacement for incumbent Meijer of Grand Rapids Township, who was one of 10 House Republicans to impeach then-President Donald Trump after the Jan. 6, 2021, U.S. Capitol riot.

Gibbs declared victory early Wednesday morning at a watch party at his campaign headquarters in Wyoming, a suburb of Grand Rapids.

Meijer conceded the race around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday in a statement.

Gibbs had about 52% of the voteto Meijer's 48% with about 87% of precincts reporting in a congressional district encompassing parts of Kent, Muskegon and Ottawa counties.

Trump called Gibbsshortly after 1 a.m. Wednesday to offer his congratulations, adding: "I'll see you soon. I'm very proud of you, John."

Gibbs told reporters Trump encouraged him to "keep it up" and continue "to kick butt."

In a victory speech surrounded by supporters in the early morning hours Wednesday, he wished Meijer "the best in his future endeavors."

"From here on out, we're facing a challenge in November with a Democrat," he said. "I think it's going to turn out very favorably for us."

Gibbs is expected to face a general election in a district President Joe Biden won in 2020and that has been identified as one of the few districts Democrats may becapable of flipping in a tough mid-termelection year. The Cook Political Report changed the race from a "toss up" to a "lean Democrat" after it called the race for Gibbs.

(Video) Trump allies win key Republican primary races

The contest between Meijer and Gibbsgarnered national attention as theRepublican Party continues to grapple with cleavages between traditional conservatives and Trump loyalists. Meijer will be the sixth of the 10House Republicans who voted for impeachment to leave at the end of his term. Two others faced primaries Tuesday.

Trump endorsed Gibbs but notably did not come to Michigan to campaign for him in the final days of campaign, despite Gibbs's struggleswith fundraising as Meijer and allies pouredmillionsinto opposing him.

Dave Wasserman, the U.S. House editor of Cook Political Report, tweeted around 10 p.m.that the "biggest surprise of the night so far" was Meijer's strength in the primary.

But what appeared to bea neck-and-neck race much of the evening diverged as results came in boosting Gibbs and setting Meijer further back. Shortly after speaking with Gibbs on the phone, Meijer released a statement congratulating his opponent.

"I'm proud to have remained true to my principles, even when doing so came at a significant political cost," Meijer said in the statement. "Though this was not the outcome we hoped for, I will continue to do everything possible to move the Republican Party, West Michigan, and our country in a positive direction."

Trump-backed Gibbs ousts Meijer in Michigan GOP race for Congress (2)

Impeachment loomed

Gibbs, 43,grew up in Lansing and studied computer science at Stanford University. He worked as a software engineer for startups in Silicon Valley and eventually joined Apple to work on the iPhone. A fluent Japanese speaker, he left California for Japan to serve as a Christian missionary for seven years.

He did amaster's in public administration at Harvard University before joining the Trump administration's HUD, overseeing homelessness programs and community development block grants. He moved to Byron Center, south of Grand Rapids, after Trump allies recruited him to run against Meijer.

Gibbs has branded himself as a Trump-approved replacement who says it was "mathematically impossible" for President Joe Biden to have won the 2020 election and defends claims of election fraud that have been dismissed by courts, legislative investigations and audits for a lack of evidence.

After casting his ballot in Byron Center south of Grand Rapids Tuesday morning, Gibbs was asked whether he would accept the results of this election.

"We'll see," he said. "Ifthe election’s on the up-and-up there will be no problem."

(Video) Republican who lost after voting to impeach Trump speaks out

Trump-backed Gibbs ousts Meijer in Michigan GOP race for Congress (3)

Meijer, 34, is the son of Meijer Inc. superstores Executive Chairman Hank Meijer. He grew up in East Grand Rapids, went to Columbia University and served in an Army intelligence unit in Iraq.

He later worked as a conflict analyst in Afghanistan and got an MBA at New York University before running to succeed Republican-turned-Libertarian former U.S. Rep. Justin Amash in 2020.

Meijerbilled himself as an effective lawmaker who has fought for veterans and pushed back against Biden administration policies he argues have contributed to high inflation and gas prices. Hestands by the decision to impeach Trump after his supporters mobbed the capitol on Meijer's third day in office.

"We always expected this to be a tight race," Meijer told The News early Wednesday morning before the results came in. "There were a lot of folks who had counted us out weeks, if not months, ago. I'm proud of what strength we've been able to demonstrate so far."

Outside groupspoured more than $3.6 million into the 3rd District GOP primary race, primarily supporting Meijer and opposing Gibbs. One political action committeebacked by Meijer's family, Principled Leadership for Michigan, has spent almost $1.4 million on the race this cycle.

Meijer's campaign and leadership PAC spent more than $2 millionthis cycle, compared with just under$334,000 spent by the Gibbs campaign.

But last Tuesday, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee announced it would spend $425,000 to run a TV ad in the Grand Rapids areaboosting Gibbs in the last week before the primary.

The ad wasa fake attackon Gibbs that was seen by many in both partiesas a move topromote his name amongTrump's base. It claimedGibbs is "too conservative" for west Michigan but also saidhe was "handpicked" by Trump to run for Congress, worked in his administrationand would pursue Trump's policies in office.

Meijerdecried the spendingas hypocritical. Gibbs said of the ad:"I don't know what their strategy is and I don't really care."

A change in west Michigan

Sue Atkinson, a poll worker in Grand Rapids Township, said she cast her vote for Gibbs.

(Video) GOP Rep. Peter Meijer loses primary to Trump-backed opponent John Gibbs

"I just voted for a change," Atkinsonsaid. She added thatit felt like Meijer was assuming he would get her community's support, and that she was receiving two to three mailers a day from his campaign.

"Then we knew he was running scared because he did so much mailing. That was the biggest turnoff."

Trump-backed Gibbs ousts Meijer in Michigan GOP race for Congress (4)

Tuesdaynight,Meijer supporters gathered at Social House Kitchen and Bar in downtown Grand Rapids to watch the results come in.

State Rep. Tommy Brann, R-Wyoming, attended the party. Hesaid he supportsMeijer because he'san honest, humble and "good human being."

"I make mistakes too," Brannsaid of Meijer's impeachment vote, which he disagreed with. "Just because hemade one mistake doesn't mean you run away from somebody you like."

Mark Mochel of Grand Rapids also attended Meijer's watch party, which disbanded around midnight. A self-described moderate conservative, he said he feels like he no longer has "a political home."

"The radicals on both sides are controlling the talking points, and I think Peter Meijer represents a more moderate position," he said."I think it would be a huge detriment to this community but also tothe country if we push out anymoderates fromeither side."

About 10 miles south,Gibbs supporters held a watch party at his campaign office on top of a real estate brokerage.

Some supporters sang “M-A-G-A” to the tune of “YMCA,”miming the letters with their arms raised high. Later, theydanced to "Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Berry.Cheers erupted when early returns showed Gibbs leading 63% to 37% shortly after 9 pm.

Brenda Wodarskiof Rockfordwas among those dancing.

(Video) Former President Trump calls John Gibbs to congratulate him on beating Peter Meijer

“If they don't win, people haven't done their homework,” shesaid of Gibbs and Republican gubernatorial candidate Ryan Kelley, who lost Tuesday to conservative commentator Tudor Dixon. “They're listening instead of researching. Everybody needs to do their own research.”

Trump-backed Gibbs ousts Meijer in Michigan GOP race for Congress (5)

Also in attendance was Robert "RJ" Regan, a failed GOP state House candidate who was condemned by Michigan GOP Chair Ron Weiser after he said he tells his daughters, "if rape is inevitable, you should just lie back and enjoy it."

Gibbs and Meijer shared similar stances on many conservative policies, including abortion, immigration, inflation and government spending. Bothsupported the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and do not support exceptions for abortion in cases of rape or incest.

They disagree on the results and fallout fromthe 2020 presidential election: Gibbsarguedthat the 2020 election was rife with fraud and that Trump was the true winner of the national presidential race, despite multiple audits and court cases at nearly every level of government failing to turn up evidence that supports his theory.

Meijer acknowledges that Biden won the election and has said Trump "bears responsibility for inciting the insurrection."

Analysts have said Meijer is the only candidate who stands a chance at beating Democratic nominee Hillary Scholten in the general election in the newly formed 3rd, which Biden won in 2020.Gibbs has pushed back on that analysis, saying Meijer would stand less of a chance because of his waning support among his own party.

“If John Gibbs wins that primary, then Democrats will take that seat as long as Hillary Scholten is alive on Election Day," Adrian Hemond, CEO of the consulting firm Grassroots Midwest, told The News last month.

“This is ahyper-competitive seat, and if the Republicans didn't have a well-heeled incumbent with a very good biography and a more moderate tone in this district, they would be in trouble here. And if Congressman Meijer loses, that's where they'll find themselves.”

rbeggin@detroitnews.com

FAQs

What was Peter Meijer running for? ›

Meijer ran for reelection in the district for the 2022 elections. His primary opponent was John Gibbs, a former Trump administration official.

Who represents Grand Rapids in Congress? ›

Michigan's 3rd congressional district
RepresentativePeter Meijer R–Grand Rapids
Distribution68.54% urban 31.46% rural
Population (2019)752,287
Median household income$64,919
3 more rows

Who is Gibbs in Michigan? ›

He is a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in the 2022 elections, having defeated incumbent Peter Meijer in the Republican Party primary election for Michigan's 3rd congressional district.
...
John Gibbs (government official)
John Gibbs
Succeeded byVacant
Personal details
BornMichigan, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
11 more rows

Where did Peter Meijer go to college? ›

Peter Meijer

Is Tom Clancy liberal or conservative? ›

A long-time proponent of conservative and Republican views, Clancy dedicated books to U.S. conservative political figures, including Ronald Reagan.

Which political party supported the civil rights movement? ›

The passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was a significant event in converting the Deep South to the Republican Party; in that year most Senatorial Republicans supported the Act (most of the opposition came from Southern Democrats).

Who is running for governor in Michigan? ›

November 8, 2022
NomineeGretchen WhitmerTudor Dixon
PartyDemocraticRepublican
Running mateGarlin GilchristShane Hernandez
1 more row

Who controls the Michigan Congress? ›

The Speaker of the House and the Senate Majority Leader control the assignment of committees and leadership positions, along with control of the agenda in their chambers. The two leaders, along with the Governor of Michigan, control most of the agenda of state business in Michigan.

Who represents Oxford Michigan in Congress? ›

Elissa Slotkin (MI-08) in the aftermath of the November 2021 shooting at Oxford High School.

Where is the 3rd House district in Michigan? ›

Michigan's 3rd Congressional District is located in the western region of the lower peninsula of Michigan and includes the city of Albion, Battle Creek, Grand Rapids, Hastings, Ionia, and Marshall. It includes Ionia , Barry , and Calhoun counties and portions of Kent and Montcalm counties.

How long was Gibbs in a coma? ›

They go to first name basis and “Todd” is puzzled because Gibbs took a while to come out of his coma after Kuwait too. Captain Gelfin examined Gibbs's records from back then and Gibbs was in a coma for nineteen days.

Why was Gibbs in a coma? ›

Tony, McGee, and Ziva wait in a car as Gibbs contacts an undercover government agent on a Turkish ship. The agent tells Gibbs about an upcoming attack on a Marine Assault Ship. Outside, the team witnesses an explosion from the ship, which kills the agent and severely injures Gibbs, leaving him in a coma.

Who is the lady that picks up Gibbs? ›

The Mysterious Red-Head or "Mysterious Red-Head" is an unnamed woman who was often seen in the company of NCIS Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs.

What bracelet does Gibbs wear? ›

The silver bracelet that Gibbs wears is actually a medical alert bracelet that used to belong to Mark Harmons father. He wears it in memory of his dad so it is not a Gibbs thing but rather a Mark Harmon thing!

Why did Gibbs change his name? ›

Family. Giggs is the son of former rugby union and Wales international rugby league footballer Danny Wilson. Giggs was christened Ryan Joseph Wilson but as a teenager changed his surname to that of his mother after his parents separated.

Does Gibbs sleep on the couch? ›

Although Gibbs lives in the same house he lived in with his wife and daughter; he never goes upstairs. He can no longer sleep in the bed he shared with his wife. He sleeps on the couch in his living room--when he does sleep that is.

Is Meijer a Chinese company? ›

(/ˈmaɪ. ər/, MY-ər; stylized as meijer) is an American supercenter chain that primarily operates throughout the Midwest. Its corporate headquarters are in Walker, Michigan, which is a part of the Grand Rapids metropolitan area.

Is Meijer Dutch or German? ›

Meijer is a Dutch surname. It refers to a profession similar to a bailiff or steward. It originates from the Latin word maior and is often rendered Meyer abroad. As of 2007, there wre 39,801 people with the surname Meijer in the Netherlands.

Who currently owns Meijer? ›

Real Time Net Worth

Reflects change since 5 pm ET of prior trading day. Brothers Hank and Doug Meijer together own Michigan-based supermarket chain Meijer, which has 230 stores in the Midwest.

Are Blue Dog Democrats Conservative? ›

Ideology. The Blue Dog Coalition is the most conservative grouping of Democrats in the house. It "advocates for fiscal responsibility, a strong national defense and bipartisan consensus rather than conflict with Republicans".

Is President Jack Ryan a Republican? ›

At first, Ryan was portrayed as being unaffiliated with either of the major parties, although later on, it is clear that he is, in fact, a Reagan Republican.

Is Paul Ryan liberal or conservative? ›

Conservatism and partisanship

Ryan has a lifetime American Conservative Union rating of 91/100.

What are the 10 civil rights? ›

Civil rights allow people to live freely within a democracy.
...
Civil Liberties
  • Freedom of speech.
  • Freedom of the press.
  • Freedom of religion.
  • Freedom to vote.
  • Freedom against unwarranted searches of your home or property.
  • Freedom to have a fair court trial.
  • Freedom to remain silent in a police interrogation.

Who voted against the Voting Rights Act? ›

This amendment overwhelmingly failed, with 42 Democrats and 22 Republicans voting against it.

Who opposed the civil rights movement? ›

Opposition to civil rights was led by elected officials, journalists, and community leaders who shared racist ideologies, shut down public schools and parks to prevent integration, and encouraged violence against civil rights activists.

What is the salary of Michigan governor? ›

Governor of Michigan
FormationNovember 3, 1835
DeputyLieutenant Governor of Michigan
Salary$159,300 per year
WebsiteOfficial website
9 more rows

Is Michigan a Republican or liberal state? ›

Michigan is considered part of the Democrats' "Blue Wall." Governors since the 1970s have alternated between the two parties, and statewide offices including attorney general, secretary of state, and senator have been held by members of both parties in varying proportions, though the state currently is represented by ...

Who is the next person in line for succession for the Michigan governor What is the title of that position? ›

According to the Michigan Constitution, the line of succession is as follows: lieutenant governor, the elected secretary of state, the elected attorney general, the president pro tempore of the senate and speaker of the house of representatives.

Does Michigan have any Republican Congressmen? ›

List of members of the Michigan United States House delegation, their terms in office, district boundaries, and the district political ratings according to the CPVI. The delegation has a total of 14 members, with 7 Democrats and 7 Republicans.

How much does a Michigan congressman make? ›

$71,685/year

How many Republicans and Democrats are in the Michigan House of Representatives? ›

Michigan House of Representatives
Structure
Seats110
Political groupsMajority Republican (56) Minority Democratic (53) Independent (1)
Length of term2 years
24 more rows

What cities are in district 8 in Michigan? ›

Michigan's 8th District

The major cities include (most of) Lansing, East Lansing, Brighton, Howell, Clarkston, Lake Orion, Rochester, and Rochester Hills. To contact her District Office, please visit the Offices page.

How many House of Representatives are from Michigan? ›

There are 110 Michigan Representatives who are elected by the qualified electors of districts having approximately 77,000 to 91,000 residents. Legislative districts are drawn on the basis of population figures through the federal decennial census.

Who are the representatives from each district in Michigan for the U.S. House of Representatives? ›

Current members
  • 1st district: Jack Bergman (R) (since 2017)
  • 2nd district: Bill Huizenga (R) (since 2011)
  • 3rd district: Peter Meijer (R) (since 2021)
  • 4th district: John Moolenaar (R) (since 2015)
  • 5th district: Dan Kildee (D) (since 2013)
  • 6th district: Fred Upton (R) (since 1987)
  • 7th district: Tim Walberg (R) (since 2011)

Where is the 73rd district in Michigan? ›

Michigan's 73rd House of Representatives district (also referred to as Michigan's 73rd House district) is a legislative district within the Michigan House of Representatives located in part of Ingham County.

Who is the congressman of 3rd District? ›

It is currently represented in the 19th Congress by Arnolfo Teves Jr. of the Nationalist People's Coalition (NPC). Arnolfo Teves Jr.

What cities are in district 9 in Michigan? ›

Major cities include Berkley, Beverly Hills, Bingham Farms, Bloomfield Township, Clawson, Center Line, Clinton Township, Eastpointe, Ferndale, Franklin, Fraser, Hazel Park, Huntington Woods, Madison Heights, Mount Clemens, Pleasant Ridge, Roseville, Royal Oak, St.

What is Peter Meijer district? ›

Who's running for governor in Michigan? ›

November 8, 2022
NomineeGretchen WhitmerTudor Dixon
PartyDemocraticRepublican
Running mateGarlin GilchristShane Hernandez
1 more row

What does Meijer mean in German? ›

It refers to a profession similar to a bailiff or steward. It originates from the Latin word maior and is often rendered Meyer abroad. Meijer. Pronunciation.

Why is there a giraffe on Meijer? ›

During the 1970s and 80s, Meijer had a playland for kids inside the store where there were animal statues. During a remodeling project, a contractor ordered a giraffe but it was too large for kids to use. Instead of returning it, the contractor played a joke and installed it on the roof of the gas station.

Who currently owns Meijer? ›

Meijer was a local barber who entered the grocery business during the Great Depression. His first employees included his 14-year-old son, Frederik Meijer, who later became chairman of the company. The current co-chairmen, brothers Hank and Doug Meijer, are Hendrik's grandsons.

What is the Michigan governors salary? ›

Governor of Michigan
FormationNovember 3, 1835
DeputyLieutenant Governor of Michigan
Salary$159,300 per year
WebsiteOfficial website
9 more rows

Is Michigan a Republican or liberal state? ›

Michigan is considered part of the Democrats' "Blue Wall." Governors since the 1970s have alternated between the two parties, and statewide offices including attorney general, secretary of state, and senator have been held by members of both parties in varying proportions, though the state currently is represented by ...

Who is the next person in line for succession for the Michigan governor What is the title of that position? ›

According to the Michigan Constitution, the line of succession is as follows: lieutenant governor, the elected secretary of state, the elected attorney general, the president pro tempore of the senate and speaker of the house of representatives.

Can a non congressman be Speaker of the House? ›

As the Constitution does not explicitly state that the speaker must be an incumbent member of the House, it is permissible for representatives to vote for someone who is not a member of the House at the time, and non-members have received a few votes in various speaker elections over the past several years.

How long can the Speaker of the House serve? ›

The House elects a new speaker by roll call vote when it first convenes after a general election for its two-year term, or when a speaker dies, resigns or is removed from the position intra-term.

Who was the first woman Speaker of the House in United States history? ›

On January 4, 2007, Nancy Pelosi of California became the first woman to serve as Speaker of the House.

Videos

1. Trump-endorsed John Gibbs Surges in Key GOP Congressional Race
(The John-Henry Westen Channel)
2. How much influence does Trump still have over GOP? What primary results tell us
(CBS News)
3. John Gibbs Wins GOP 3rd Congressional District
(FOX 17 WXMI)
4. Trump-Backed Candidates Pull Off Primary Wins
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