Veteran and business owner John James announced on Thursday he will run for the Senate seat in Michigan currently occupied by incumbent Democratic Sen. Gary Peters.

James ran against incumbent Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow in 2018. He only lost by seven points.

James appeared on Fox and Friends this morning. From The Washington Examiner:

“I believe that right now nothing has changed. I still have a passion for service. I still have a clear vision,” James said. “We need the courage that was exhibited to us on D-Day. We need politicians who will go into Washington and will put service before self.”

“When I get there, we’re going to make sure to put the American people first. We’re going to put country over party. Put the people of the state of Michigan first,” James said.

James believes his experience in the Army and as a business owner will help his campaign. From Townhall:

“I understand what we need to do, because I have experience as a business leader, as a job creator, how to protect our economy from socialism, how to bring people together and unite people to make sure that we can defeat the evils that face us today,” James said on Fox.

“I also, as a combat veteran, understand the service and sacrifice that our veterans make every single day and (am) willing to stand up for this country — not any party, not any ideology. But putting country first, putting Michigan first, and looking forward to continuing my service,” James said.

President Donald Trump has called James “a future star of the Republican Party.” Trump considered James for the position of United Nations ambassador but chose Kelly Knight Craft.

Politico reported that “Trump campaign officials told the National Republican Senatorial Committee that a James Senate bid would amp up Democratic engagement, investment, and turnout in Michigan — and hence hurt the president’s prospects in the state” since Trump barely won Michigan.

Trump wanted James to run for a congressional seat, but others disagreed:

James met with the president and adviser Jared Kushner in the White House last month. During the meeting, Trump did not explicitly encourage or discourage James from running for Senate, according to three people familiar with the conversation. Trump’s approach, several people pointed out, contrasted with his past aggressive recruitment of GOP Senate candidates. Ahead of the 2018 midterms, the president vigorously wooed then-Rep. Kevin Cramer into the North Dakota Senate race, at one point even meeting with his family in the Oval Office.

Senate GOP officials vigorously disagreed with the Trump team’s assertion, arguing that a James Senate bid would give the president the strongest possible Michigan ticket with which to campaign. The NRSC produced a memo recently outlining how James’ strength and name identification would boost GOP turnout in the state, to Trump’s benefit.


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