Virginia Democrat Congresswoman Elaine Luria became one of the first incumbents to lose re-election Tuesday night as well as the fourth member of the House Select Committee of Jan. 6 to leave Congress next year.
Luria lost in Virginia’s southeast 2nd congressional district to Republican Jennifer Kiggans, a nurse practitioner and former Navy pilot.
In her concession speech, Lauria congratulated her opponent, thanked supporters, and went on to fearmonger over President Donald Trump’s “danger” to “democracy.”
“Our work is not done,” Luria said. “Donald Trump wants to announce for president in 2024, and the dangers that exist to our democracy, the things that I’ve been working on as a member of the Select Committee for the January 6th investigation … that work continues.”
Nearly half the Jan. 6 Committee, however, won’t.
Luria follows Committee Vice Chair Liz Cheney who also lost her House seat in a referendum. In August, Cheney was overwhelmingly defeated by Wyoming attorney Harriet Hageman challenging the incumbent congressman in a Republican primary. Cheney was ultimately booted out of Congress by more than 37 points. Had Democrat voters not changed party registration to back Cheney in the Republican contest, Cheney’s margin of defeat would have been far wider.
Since joining House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Select Committee as the leader’s hand-picked vice chair, Cheney’s endorsement has proven to be the political kiss of death for the soon-to-be ex-lawmaker’s few allies. Cheney herself began her third term in the latest Congress with the number three role in the House Republican conference as chair. By summer, Cheney was co-opted by Democrats to lead their latest witch hunt probe and was kicked from her perch in leadership.
Illinois Rep. Adam Kinzinger was the second Republican hand-picked by Pelosi to serve on the Select Committee. Rather than face the same humiliation as Cheney in Wyoming, Kinzinger opted not to run again. Jan. 6 Committee Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., once considered a rising star in the Democratic Party, also turned down a bid for re-election.
The remaining five members of the Select Committee who re-appeared on the ballot this fall are running in districts deemed reliably Democrat.