Adam Smiddy — a former Green Beret who served 27 months in Iraq and Afghanistan as a Special Forces operator — says his time fighting insurgents taught him “what real leadership is, what the freedom we fight for costs, and what it means to be an American.”
Smiddy is the only Democrat running for the 47th District state House seat being vacated by state Rep. Hank Vaupel, R-Fowlerville, who is term limited. He will be running in the general election against the winner of the Republican primary in August.
“I am running to disrupt the well-established and connected,” Smiddy said. “We are now living through another economic collapse, and the response for working people is not proportionate to the value we deliver to the American and Michigan economies.”
Smiddy said the pandemic highlights the failures of our state and nation in the areas of health care, education, and tax fairness.
“Many of us are at risk of losing all that we have worked for, so we are ready to further risk our lives and futures even at the cost of our safety,” Smiddy said. “While some of us have enough savings to ride out this crisis, many do not. Some of us are able to work from home, but others in Livingston County can’t even stream a movie, video chat with friends, or get an email with an attachment.
“This deficiency also highlights our broad disparities in education. Every child should be learning online today, but in many parts of our county they are unable to do so because as a state we haven’t invested in our broadband infrastructure. If we fail to act quickly, our rural communities will continue to see economic declines.”
As a member of the military, Smiddy said he was lucky to have excellent health care coverage that is better than what most American workers have. He learned how lucky he was when he left the military and had to depend on the Healthy Michigan Medicaid expansion when his studies at the Medical School in the Caribbean were interrupted by the Zika virus outbreak of 2016. Smiddy said he will protect that social safety net for the millions of Michiganders who are having their lives turned upside down by another virus.
“I have lived this life of uncertainty and understand the toll it takes, and know that I will fight for a more prosperous Michigan for all of us,” he said.
Smiddy also promised to fight for fairer taxes, noting that Michigan residents paid 10 times more in taxes than corporations did last year, while receiving only marginal benefits.
Smiddy graduated from Brighton High School, earned a bachelor’s degree from Eastern Michigan University, and a master’s degree from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.
Motivated by the Sept. 11 attacks, he joined the U.S. Army in 2004, earned his Green Beret, and deployed around the world, including more than 27 months in Iraq and Afghanistan leading Special Forces hunting for insurgents.
From 2017 to 2018, Smiddy was director of Veterans Services for the County. When he was fired from his position, no official reason was given; Smiddy maintained it was the direct result of his efforts to determine exactly what happened to cash and other items donated to the department by a local resident who said she could not obtain a receipt despite repeated attempts to do so. He settled a Whistleblower lawsuit with Livingston County and the former head of the committee that oversaw the department in 2019.
Smiddy lives in Howell with his wife, Renee, and their two children, who attend Howell Public Schools.
The 47 th District includes the city of Howell and the townships of Cohoctah, Conway, Deerfield, Handy, Hartland, Howell, Iosco, Marion, Oceola, Tyrone, and Unadilla.