Michigan Rep. Justin Amash, a "Ron Paul Republican" who votes no at times when even Dr. No votes yes, got redistricted and is now, Politico reports, at risk of losing his seat to a Democratic challenger, if the pollster feeds the would-be voter the right supposedly damning details on an incumbent who most people seem to think they like at first. Details:
Amash, a libertarian who has clashed with his own party, registers only a 25 percent favorability rating and begins a race against a lesser known Democrat up by just 11 points, according to the Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research memo shared with POLITICO.
The numbers are clearly designed to roll out the red carpet for Steve Pestka, a Grand Rapids native and former prosecutor and county commissioner who is strongly mulling a challenge to Amash.
The first test of an Amash-Pestka match up comes out 50 percent to 39 percent in favor of the incumbent.
After voters are read a positive profile on each candidate, the gap closes to just 2 points for Amash, 48 percent to 46 percent.
In the final test, using a "balanced battery of negatives on both candidates," it's 47 percent to 43 percent with Pestka in the lead.
The negatives used against Amash include noting that he was the only member of the state legislature to "vote to allow utility companies to shut off the heat to Michigan seniors and to allow health care professional convicted of a sex offense to keep their medical license."
Mike Riggs wrote about Amash last week in a piece about potential claimants to the throne of the House's most libertarian member when Ron Paul is gone in 2013.