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Republicans gather for “Squash Amash” rally in Grand Rapids

Trump supporters holding signs at a "Squash Amash" rally
Cheyna Roth
Michigan Radio
Deb VanderHoff (far left) came from Bailey, Michigan for the rally with her friends, Judy Behler and Jewel Stark (far right).

Dozens of President Donald Trump supporters gathered for what they called a “Squash Amash” rally Friday. Republican U.S. Rep. Justin Amash has been under fire from his own party. 

That’s because of criticism he’s launched at President Donald Trump – including that Congress should start impeachment proceedings.

Republicans who support  Trump say they don’t like that Amash has been critical of the president.

Jan Weller was at the rally in Downtown Grand Rapids – just outside the federal building that houses Amash’s office. Weller says she’s voted for Amash in the past – but not anymore.

Trump supporters holding "Squash Amash" signs at a rally in Grand Rapids.
Credit Cheyna Roth / Michigan Radio
Michigan Radio
Peopled lined the sidewalk for the "Squash Amash" rally in downtown Grand Rapids.

“Fact I had a sign in my yard for Amash," Weller said. "Just feel betrayed that he’s going against what we all – and the district – what he stood for.”

But there was also a handful of people there to support Amash. Including Tom Horrigan – who lives in Grand Rapids and has voted for Amash.

“When you have a bad leader, you have to say no this person should not lead this organization," Horrigan said. "Donald Trump should not be leading this country.”

Amash is the first – and so far only – Republican to advocate for the start of impeachment proceedings against the president. Earlier this week, Amash stepped down from the conservative Freedom Caucus. Amash was a founding member of the roughly three-dozen far-right member group.

Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County. Eventually, Cheyna took her investigative and interview skills and moved on to journalism. She got her masters at Michigan State University and was a documentary filmmaker, podcaster, and freelance writer before finding her home with NPR. Very soon after joining MPRN, Cheyna started covering the 2016 presidential election, chasing after Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and all their surrogates as they duked it out for Michigan. Cheyna also focuses on the Legislature and criminal justice issues for MPRN. Cheyna is obsessively curious, a passionate storyteller, and an occasional backpacker. Follow her on Twitter at @Cheyna_R
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