In an interview with Jonathan Martin of the Politico, Michigan Rep. Thaddeus McCotter confirmed that he’s seriously considering a White House bid and said he will make a decision within the next two weeks.
McCotter argued that the current crop of GOP candidates simply isn’t making the case about how to confront what he described as the existential threats facing the country.
“I think the majority of the Republican electorate isn’t happy with the choices they’ve got and want to take a look at new people,” he said.
McCotter said his party must address four major issues: “The challenge of globalization, the war for freedom against terrorists, the rise of Communist China and whether moral relativism erodes a nation built on self-evident truth.”
But what makes a little-known four-term House member who gave up his own leadership position think he can enter the campaign in June and be a viable contender for the nomination?
McCotter said the revolution in communication and media has made it easier for aspiring politicians who don’t have the sort of name identification or personal wealth that traditionally determined who could mount a national campaign.
“It’s easier to get your message out today, and people will take a look at it — and if they like it, maybe they vote for you,” he said.
Pressed further, the Michigander quipped: “I’m from Detroit — we live to prove the doubters wrong.”
If anything, McCotter, 45, is known among political insiders for such wit — along with a love for rock music and his chops on the guitar. He’s a member of a band — The Second Amendments — comprised of a bipartisan group of House members. At a congressional picnic in 2006, President George W. Bush memorably deemed him “that rock and roll dude.”
But he’s also developed something of a cult following on the right as an unapologetic conservative who can quote Russell Kirk as easily as he can Robert Plant. (McCotter weaved Led Zeppelin lyrics into a House floor speech earlier this year.)
Frequent appearances on Fox’s late-night show “Red Eye” and Dennis Miller’s radio program also have built up his fan base in the right-leaning media, particularly among Republicans who, like him, came of age in the 1980s.
“There’s no one I’d like to see more at a debate than McCotter,” gushed conservative Web impresario Andrew Breitbart. “This is a guy that’s blunt, sarcastic, pop-culture-savvy, constitutionally sound and an authentic voice.”