Uncategorized — August 12, 2011 at 10:31 am

BREAKING: John Waltz, former Exec. Dir. of Heartland Revolution, to challenge Fred Upton in MI-06


Yesterday, John Waltz, former Executive Director of Heartland Revolution, filed papers with the FEC to run against Fred Upton in Michigan’s 6th Congressional District in the 2012 election.

Waltz is no stranger to running for Congress. In 2010, he ran an unsuccessful campaign in Kentucky’s 4th District where he was outspent by a 3-to-1 margin by his Republican opponent.

Since then, Waltz was the former Executive Director of Heartland Revolution. Heartland Revolution has been very active in Michigan helping with recall efforts against Republicans across the state and organizing against the Emergency Manager law, particularly in Benton Harbor which is in the 6th District. He is a native Michigander from the west side of the state so this is a bit of a homecoming for Waltz.

Here’s John’s bio:

John was born and raised in a working family in his hometown of Kalamazoo, Michigan. His dad worked for General Motors for over 30 years and his mom was a homemaker. The youngest of seven children, John grew up believing that through hard work, a person could provide for his or her family, even when times were tough.

John enlisted in the U.S. Navy at the age of 24 and was assigned to an aircraft carrier, the USS George Washington. His first day at sea was September 10, 2001, one day before the terrorist attacks. John’s group was immediately sent to New York to safeguard the city and the harbor.

After the attacks, John served in Afghanistan and later in Iraq. He went back to Iraq as a civilian vocational instructor teaching Iraqis to be electricians, and also worked to raise funds to build hospitals in Iraq. John realized success in the Middle East is about more than just military strength; it requires improving the daily lives of Afghans and Iraqis, and giving them the economic freedom to no longer be dependent on warlords.

During his military service, John was ordered to take an anthrax vaccine that had not been approved by the FDA. When he came home from the Middle East, John suffered severe health problems. His involvement in politics began after fighting for benefits from the Veteran’s Administration. Going on to advocate for veterans on Capitol Hill, John realized just how out of touch politicians had become, and decided to run for Congress.

John is married to Janie Waltz and has four young daughters. John worked as the Executive Director of Heartland Revolution and served as the Executive Director for Severus Worldwide, which focuses on rebuilding hospitals in conflict zones, particularly in Iraq. He also served as the Executive Vice President for the Iraq War Veterans Organization, and as the Kentucky Director for the Order of the Silver Rose, which advocates for Vietnam Veterans injured by exposure to Agent Orange.

Young, progressive, a military veteran and dedicated to returning Michigan to it’s rightful place as a Democratic state, Waltz is a breath of fresh air in a district represented by a right wing, corporate lackey, Whirlpool heir and millionaire John Upton.

I’ll have more about Waltz as his campaign gets its feet under it including how you can help with fundraising and helping to GOTV for this excellent Democrat.