Republican Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan will not seek Democrat Carl Levin’s open Senate seat in 2014, opting instead to remain in the House.
Amash, a leading libertarian in the House, did not want to risk losing the influence he has gained among conservatives in the lower chamber, reports the National Journal
"Justin feels that he’s hitting his stride in the House, and that it’s the best place for him right now," one source told the publication.
"Love #MI03 & excited abt work I’m doing in House," Amash tweeted from is personal Twitter account Tuesday night, linking to the Journal article.
Amash led the GOP effort over the summer to defund the National Security Agency’s domestic surveillance program
s, which eventually failed by 12 votes but earned him widespread praise among conservatives and boosted his status in the House.
Still, the Journal reported,Amash faced uncertainties in a potential Senate bid, citing what the publication described as "muddled" polling numbers against Rep. Gary Peters, the de facto Democratic nominee.
There were also concerns about fundraising, reports mlive.com
, noting that he is known for taking few political action committee dollars, relying mainly on individual donations.
Amash’s most recent campaign finance report, for the second quarter of 2013, showed only $164,419 in cash on hand, while Peters reported a campaign war chest of $1.78 million.
His decision, according to some political observers, makes it more likely that Republican National Committeewoman and former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land will be Michigan’s Republican Senate nominee in 2014.
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