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Endorsement: Our primary pick for Michigan's 3rd Congressional District


Here is our recommendation for the partisan primary in Michigan's 3rd Congressional District covering the Grand Rapids area.

Peter Meijer has had an eventful first term in Congress. The scion of the Meijer supermarket chain family was one of just 10 Republican House members to vote in favor of Donald Trump's second impeachment, and one of just 35 who voted in favor of establishing the Jan. 6 Committee.

He is a frequent target of attacks from hard-line conservative Republicans for his moderate views. Meijer is an Iraq War veteran. He took well-deserved heat for an unauthorized and ill-considered trip he made to Afghanistan during the U.S. withdrawal from that country.

We write that off as a freshman mistake.

His primary opponent, John Gibbs of Byron Center, is an interesting candidate. Gibbs was an official in the Housing and Urban Development Department under Trump. He holds a degree in computer science from Stanford and a master's of public administration from the Harvard Kennedy school. 

Meijer is one of the few moderate voices among Republicans in Congress. That ideological diversity within the party is much needed. Peter Meijer should be renominated. Attorney Hillary Scholten of Grand Rapids is unopposed in the Democratic primary.

Michigan is a key battleground in the fight for control of the U.S. House this election cycle. The state's current 14-member delegation is divided evenly between Republicans and Democrats.

The state lost a seat to redistricting, and will send 13 members, chosen from newly drawn districts, to the House in January.

Many voters will be casting their ballots in unfamiliar districts when they go to the polls on Aug. 2, and for candidates they know little about.