Thursday, July 25, 2024
Share:

Virginia GOP Primary Race Between Trump Endorsee and House Conservative Too Close to Call



It’s still to close to call the winner in a Republican primary contest in Virginia that garnered national attention, featuring a challenger endorsed by former President Donald Trump running against an incumbent congressman and chairman of the House Freedom Caucus

At 11 p.m. Tuesday, McGuire held a lead of 50.3% of the vote to Good’s 49.7%, with 96% of the votes counted, according to NBC News.

Good ran for his third term representing Virginia’s 5th Congressional District, which spans Charlottesville, the suburbs of Richmond, and through Lynchburg and Danville close to the border with North Carolina. The Freedom Caucus, which Good leads, represents House conservatives.

Trump opposed Good, who had endorsed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in the Republican presidential primary March 5. In that contest, Trump easily defeated his former U.N. ambassador, Nikki Haley, as well as DeSantis, who had dropped out. 

In a June 17 post on Truth Social, his social media platform, Trump wrote:  “Bob Good is BAD FOR VIRGINIA, AND BAD FOR THE USA! He turned his back on our incredible Movement, and was constantly attacking and fighting me until recently, when he gave a warm and ‘loving’ Endorsement – But really, it was too late!” 

Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., whom Good voted last year to oust, also endorsed McGuire. So did the centrist Republican Mainstreet Partnership.    

Good had the endorsements of former Trump adviser and “War Room” host Steve Bannon, as well as the backing of former U.S. Rep. Dave Brat, a former Freedom Caucus member best known for ousting one-time House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in a GOP primary. 

In the November general election, whichever candidate wins will face Democrat candidate Gloria Tinsley Witt, a businesswoman and activist. She defeated Gary Terry and Paul Riley. The Associated Press called the race at 8:19 p.m.

McGuire, a former Navy SEAL, has been criticized for being in the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, when rioters clashed with Capitol Police as a joint session of Congress met to certify Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory over Trump in the 2020 election.

McGuire called Good a “never Trumper” during the campaign.

Good has said he considered Trump the best president in his lifetime, but endorsed DeSantis because Trump is constitutionally limited to only one more four-year term, The Associated Press reported.

Also on the Virginia front, the primary results will determine who vies for open seats in the U.S. House of Representatives created by the pending retirements of two incumbent Democrats. 

In 2018, Rep. Abigail Spanberger won the once Republican-leaning 7th Congressional District, defeating Brat, the incumbent Republican. Spanberger reportedly plans to run for Virginia governor in 2025. 

The congressional district spans northern and central Virginia.

Retired Army Col. Eugene Vindman won the Democratic primary to fill the seat being vacated by Spanberger. He is the twin brother of retired Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, who became famous for his congressional testimony during the first Trump impeachment in 2019. The AP called the race at 8:06 p.m.

Vindman had the endorsement of Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., who was censured by the House and removed from the House Intelligence Committee he once chaired for making repeated misleading statements to the public. 

In the primary, Vindman took on current and former elected officials, including state Delegate Briana Sewell, Prince William County Board of Supervisors member Andrea Bailey, and former state Delegate Elizabeth Guzman. 

On the Republican side former Green Beret Derrick Anderson defeated former Navy SEAL Cameron Hamilton. The AP called the race at 9 p.m.

Also, Rep. Jennifer Wexton, a Democrat, isn’t seeking another term representing the 10th Congressional District in Northern Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C.

The Wexton-endorsed Virginia state Sen. Suhas Subramanyam won a 12-candidate primary among Democrats. 

Other contenders included former Virginia House Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, state Sen. Dan Helmer, Jennifer Boysko, and former Virginia Education Secretary Atif Qarni. The AP called the race at 9:15 p.m.

Lawyer Mike Clancy won the Republican primary in the congressional district, which leans heavily Democrat, defeating Aliscia Andrews, who ran for the seat in 2020. The AP called the race at 7:41 p.m.