The S.S. Badger is under attack again. This time from a candidate actually running to represent us here in Ludington. Bill Huizenga’s opponent, in a recent debate in Newaygo, made disparaging remarks about the Badger, and the ship’s recent fight with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to stay in business.

He clearly must not know what the S.S. Badger means to the Ludington community. The S.S. Badger contributes $21 million annually to the Ludington economy. Losing this would not only devastate our entire community, but would have negative repercussions throughout West Michigan. Not to mention, the S.S. Badger employs over 200 people. It is startling to see a candidate with such disregard for potential constituents’ jobs and our economic well-being.

Bill Huizenga has always stood up for the Badger and Ludington. When the EPA tried to shut the Badger down, he fought for a solution. In 2013, the S.S. Badger signed a Consent Decree agreement with the Department of Justice and the EPA allowing the ship to continue to operate. It’s unfortunate that Bill Huizenga’s opponent appears to be just as misguided as the EPA bureaucrats who tried to shut down the S.S. Badger not based on scientific facts but rather only trying to advance a partisan agenda. Bill was also instrumental in getting the S.S. Badger named as a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service further protecting it from future EPA attacks.

For this and numerous other reasons, I will again be voting for Bill Huizenga for Congress on November 6th. I hope you will join me in supporting a candidate that is working to help our community prosper and not a candidate that shows clear contempt for one of Ludington’s most important economic and cultural landmarks.

Joe Lenius

This letter to the editor appeared in the Ludington Daily News on Friday, October 26th.