Republican Kiggans to represent 2nd District in Hampton Roads, beating incumbent Luria by nearly 12,000 votes
Republican Jen Kiggans is headed to Congress.
The ballroom at the Westin in Virginia Beach’s Town Center was abuzz for hours, long before Kiggans took the stage to announce her victory.
Kiggans said in her victory speech that she wants to “restore American strength in our economy, at our borders, in our community and on the world stage.”
Cheers of “USA” and “Jen” boomed through the hotel ballroom and supporters in cowboy hats and draped in American flags rushed for photos after her speech.
The first-term state senator from Virginia Beach unseated Democratic incumbent Elaine Luria to claim the 2nd District. Kiggans won nearly 12,000 more votes than Luria, or about a four-point margin.
The district includes Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, the Eastern Shore and much of Western Tidewater.
“I’d like to thank my opponent, Elaine Luria, who fought a hard-fought battle in this race,” Kiggans said. “And although we may differ in our political ideologies, we certainly share a love for our Navy and a love for our country.”
Kiggans “will fight for parents' rights in schools and hold Joe Biden accountable for high gas prices, a broken border and soaring inflation," Republican National Committee spokesperson Savannah Viar wrote in an email. "Congresswoman-elect Kiggans will deliver results where Democrats failed."
At a Holiday Inn in Virginia Beach, Luria supporters watched a CNN live stream on a big screen as the results came in – cheering for Democratic wins, booing for Republican ones. When Kiggans ultimately prevailed, supporters slowly trickled out.
But many stayed for Luria's concession speech shortly before 11 p.m. She said she'd called to congratulate Kiggans, prompting loud booes from her supporters.
“Please don't boo," Luria told the crowd. "Because the success of this district depends on her success."
The peaceful transition of power is a cornerstone of our democracy, and I congratulate Jen Kiggans on her win and wish her success. I have instructed my team to be as helpful as possible to ensure a smooth transition and continue providing constituent services Coastal Virginians.— Elaine Luria (@ElaineLuriaVA) November 9, 2022
Luria raised almost three times as much money as Kiggans. In total, the two candidates spent $10 million in their campaigns.
Kiggans’ win leaves her state Senate seat, which she’s held since 2020, open.
A special election will be held to fill out the rest of her 4-year term.
It’ll have to happen quickly -- Virginia’s General Assembly reconvenes January 11th.