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Meijer, Scholten vie for House seat in western Michigan

By DAVID EGGERT Associated Press

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The U.S. House race in western Michigan between Republican Peter Meijer and Democrat Hillary Scholten was too early to call Wednesday morning, with many votes still uncounted.

They are vying in what may be Michigan’s most competitive House race after Rep. Justin Amash decided not to seek reelection. A victory in the western Michigan district would make Scholten the first Democrat to represent Grand Rapids in Congress in 44 years. The 3rd District, which the five-term Amash has represented for a decade, stretches south to the Battle Creek area.

Meijer is a 32-year-old veteran who served in Iraq and later led humanitarian missions. He works in urban redevelopment and real estate. His family founded the Meijer chain of stores.

Scholten is a 38-year-old immigration lawyer who worked at the Justice Department during President Barack Obama’s administration.

Democrats see an opportunity to flip the seat with the departure of Amash, a Republican-turned-Libertarian who supported the impeachment of President Donald Trump. It has long been a GOP-leaning district but became a toss-up this cycle.

In her closing TV ad, Scholten said she lives on a middle-class street with no millionaires — an indirect reference to Meijer’s wealth. She pledged to protect medical coverage, including for those with preexisting conditions, amid Republicans’ attempts to repeal the Obama-era health care law.

Meijer’s last ad features a Vietnam veteran saying he trusts that Meijer would protect people with preexisting conditions.

The campaign committees for House Republicans and Democrats have spent millions of dollars attacking Scholten on immigration issues and Meijer on health care.

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Follow David Eggert at https://twitter.com/DavidEggert00.

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Find AP’s full election coverage at APNews.com/Election2020.