Abigail SpanbergerAbigail Spanberger- VA7

Current Position: US Representative since 2019
Affiliation: Democrat
Candidate: 2022 US Representative for District 7

Other Positions:
Vice Chair, Subcommittees Europe, Eurasia, Energy, & the Environment Subcommittee

Pinned Tweet: The Inflation Reduction Act will lower healthcare costs for Virginians. – Seniors will see Medicare out-of-pocket drug prices capped at $2,000/year – Insulin for Medicare patients will be capped at $35/month – Medicare will finally be able to negotiate drug prices

Featured video: Abigail Spanberger for Congress

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OnAir Post: Abigail Spanberger- VA7

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Wednesday invoked the Pearl Harbor attacks ahead of World War II and the 9/11 terrorist attacks, while urging the United States to do more to stop the Russian war against his country.

During the speech, delivered virtually to members of Congress in an auditorium on Capitol Hill, Zelenskyy drew a comparison between attacks on the United States and on his democracy and called on the U.S. to institute a no-fly zone over Ukraine.

He’s made the request several times before, but so far American leaders have been reluctant to grant it, citing concerns that American or NATO military pilots enforcing such a restriction on Russian warplanes would lead to a direct confrontation, significantly broadening the war.

“Today, the Ukrainian people are defending not only Ukraine, we are fighting for the values of Europe and the world, sacrificing our lives in the name of the future,” he said.

Zelenskyy began the 18-minute speech speaking Ukrainian, with a translator conveying his message in English. But he transitioned to speaking in English toward the end of the address after playing a two-minute video.

The deeply emotional video first showed peaceful scenes of Ukrainians leading their lives ahead of the war. It then transitioned to gruesome scenes of war, including bodies being added to a mass grave, images of people being treated in a hospital and several scenes of children crying as they evacuated. The video ended with the words “close the sky over Ukraine.”

Reeling From Surprise Losses, Democrats Sound the Alarm for 2022
New York Times, Jonathan Martin and Alexander BurnsNovember 4, 2021

“We were so willing to take seriously a global pandemic, but we’re not willing to say, ‘Yeah, inflation is a problem, and supply chain is a problem, and we don’t have enough workers in our work force,’” said Representative Abigail Spanberger, a Virginia Democrat facing a bruising re-election. “We gloss over that and only like to admit to problems in spaces we dominate.”

More pointedly, Ms. Spanberger said Mr. Biden must not forget that, for many voters, his mandate was quite limited: to remove former President Donald J. Trump from their television screens and to make American life ordinary again.

“Nobody elected him to be F.D.R., they elected him to be normal and stop the chaos,” she said, alluding to the sweeping agenda the president is seeking to enact with the thinnest of legislative majorities.

Democrats in Washington on Wednesday appeared no less determined to forge ahead with Mr. Biden’s signature domestic legislation: a major infrastructure bill and a multi-trillion-dollar package of social-welfare programs and initiatives to fight climate change. Both moderate and liberal lawmakers say they feel new urgency to show voters they can get big things done.

7th District Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger met with business and community leaders in Goochland Tuesday.

But with America’s pullout from Afghanistan leading the headlines, the former CIA officer took time to share her views on the situation.

Spanberger’s 7th District tour highlighting the billions sent to Virginia as part of President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan was mostly jovial. But following a roundtable discussion the former CIA counter terrorism specialist and intel officer took a moment to agree with Biden’s assessment of the exit of US troops from Afghanistan and the country’s rapid fall to the Taliban.

“There’s always been very clear indications that at the point and time when the US would leave Afghanistan there would be significant challenges,” Spanberger said. “That’s why we as a nation have invested, frankly billions upon billions of dollars in Afghan forces, working towards a time when the US would leave.”

Summary

Current Position: US Representative since 2019
Affiliation: Democrat
Candidate: 2022 US Representative for District 7

Other Positions:
Vice Chair, Subcommittees Europe, Eurasia, Energy, & the Environment Subcommittee

Pinned Tweet: The Inflation Reduction Act will lower healthcare costs for Virginians. – Seniors will see Medicare out-of-pocket drug prices capped at $2,000/year – Insulin for Medicare patients will be capped at $35/month – Medicare will finally be able to negotiate drug prices

Featured video: Abigail Spanberger for Congress

Featured Videos:

OnAir Post: Abigail Spanberger- VA7

News

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Wednesday invoked the Pearl Harbor attacks ahead of World War II and the 9/11 terrorist attacks, while urging the United States to do more to stop the Russian war against his country.

During the speech, delivered virtually to members of Congress in an auditorium on Capitol Hill, Zelenskyy drew a comparison between attacks on the United States and on his democracy and called on the U.S. to institute a no-fly zone over Ukraine.

He’s made the request several times before, but so far American leaders have been reluctant to grant it, citing concerns that American or NATO military pilots enforcing such a restriction on Russian warplanes would lead to a direct confrontation, significantly broadening the war.

“Today, the Ukrainian people are defending not only Ukraine, we are fighting for the values of Europe and the world, sacrificing our lives in the name of the future,” he said.

Zelenskyy began the 18-minute speech speaking Ukrainian, with a translator conveying his message in English. But he transitioned to speaking in English toward the end of the address after playing a two-minute video.

The deeply emotional video first showed peaceful scenes of Ukrainians leading their lives ahead of the war. It then transitioned to gruesome scenes of war, including bodies being added to a mass grave, images of people being treated in a hospital and several scenes of children crying as they evacuated. The video ended with the words “close the sky over Ukraine.”

Reeling From Surprise Losses, Democrats Sound the Alarm for 2022
New York Times, Jonathan Martin and Alexander BurnsNovember 4, 2021

“We were so willing to take seriously a global pandemic, but we’re not willing to say, ‘Yeah, inflation is a problem, and supply chain is a problem, and we don’t have enough workers in our work force,’” said Representative Abigail Spanberger, a Virginia Democrat facing a bruising re-election. “We gloss over that and only like to admit to problems in spaces we dominate.”

More pointedly, Ms. Spanberger said Mr. Biden must not forget that, for many voters, his mandate was quite limited: to remove former President Donald J. Trump from their television screens and to make American life ordinary again.

“Nobody elected him to be F.D.R., they elected him to be normal and stop the chaos,” she said, alluding to the sweeping agenda the president is seeking to enact with the thinnest of legislative majorities.

Democrats in Washington on Wednesday appeared no less determined to forge ahead with Mr. Biden’s signature domestic legislation: a major infrastructure bill and a multi-trillion-dollar package of social-welfare programs and initiatives to fight climate change. Both moderate and liberal lawmakers say they feel new urgency to show voters they can get big things done.

7th District Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger met with business and community leaders in Goochland Tuesday.

But with America’s pullout from Afghanistan leading the headlines, the former CIA officer took time to share her views on the situation.

Spanberger’s 7th District tour highlighting the billions sent to Virginia as part of President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan was mostly jovial. But following a roundtable discussion the former CIA counter terrorism specialist and intel officer took a moment to agree with Biden’s assessment of the exit of US troops from Afghanistan and the country’s rapid fall to the Taliban.

“There’s always been very clear indications that at the point and time when the US would leave Afghanistan there would be significant challenges,” Spanberger said. “That’s why we as a nation have invested, frankly billions upon billions of dollars in Afghan forces, working towards a time when the US would leave.”

Twitter

About

Source: Campaign page

From Spanberger’s government “About” page

Abigail Spanberger has always served her country and community. And now she is running for Congress. Abigail took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic. That oath didn’t come with an expiration date. When she saw partisan politics threatening the country she has worked so hard to protect, she knew it was her time to stand up for the people in the 7th District.

Abigail began her career of public service as a federal law enforcement officer working narcotics and money laundering cases with the US Postal Inspection Service. Following her love of country, public service, and languages, Abigail joined the CIA as an Operations Officer. She traveled and lived abroad collecting intelligence, managing assets, and overseeing high-profile programs in service to the United States. In 2014, Abigail left government service to begin a career in the private sector and bring her and her family back home to Virginia. Working at EAB – Royall & Company, Abigail helped colleges and universities to create diverse student bodies, increase graduation rates, and break down financial barriers to higher education.

Abigail grew up in Short Pump, in Henrico County. She attended J.R. Tucker High School’s Spanish immersion program, served as a Senate Page for US Senator Chuck Robb (D-VA), and graduated from the University of Virginia. After college, Abigail moved to Germany and earned her MBA from a dual-degree German-American program between the GISMA business school and Purdue University.

Abigail and her husband, Adam, live with their children in Glen Allen.

Experience

Work Experience

  • Federal Agent
    U.S. Postal Inspection Service
  • CIA officer
    Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

Education

  • MBA
    Purdue University’s Krannert School and the GISMA Business School in Hanover, Germany
  • BA
    University of Virginia

Personal

Representative Spanberger resides in Glen Allen, Henrico County, Virginia with her husband, Adam, and their three children.

Contact

Email:

Offices

Washington, DC Office
1239 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-2815

Glen Allen Office
4201 Dominion Blvd
Suite 110
Glen Allen, VA 23060
Phone: (804) 401-4110

Spotsylvania Office
9104 Courthouse Rd
Room 249
Spotsylvania, VA 22553
Phone: Call (202) 225-2815 for now

Web

Campaign Site, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Government Page, Wikipedia

Politics

Recent Elections

2018

Abigail Spanberger (D)176,07950.34%
Dave A. Brat (R)169,29548.40%
Joseph B. Walton (L)4,2161.21%
Write In (Write-in)2130.06%
TOTAL349,803

Source: Department of Elections

Finances

SPANBERGER, ABIGAIL A has run in 2 races for public office, winning 2 of them. The candidate has raised a total of $16,022,290.

Source: Follow the Money

Committees

Committees

House Committee on Foreign Affairs
House Agriculture Committee

Subcommittees

Europe, Eurasia, Energy, & the Environment Subcommittee, Vice Chair
Asia, the Pacific, & Nonproliferation Subcommittee
Conservation & Forestry Subcommittee, Chair
Commodity Exchanges, Energy, & Credit Subcommittee

Voting Record

Also see Spanberger government page

See: Vote Smart

Issues

Source: Campaign page

Her top priorities include strengthening our country’s national security and fighting for Virginia families by lowering prescription drug costs, creating jobs, and cleaning up Washington.

Democracy & Governance

CLEANING UP WASHINGTON

The United States of America was founded on the principle that our government is of and for the people. I have long pushed for reforms that will restore faith in our democracy, hold elected officials accountable for abuses of power, and make sure the voices of Virginians are heard in Congress.

I also believe that Members of Congress should spend their days working for the people, and not themselves. That’s why I have been leading the charge to require that Members of Congress — as well as their spouses and dependent children — place their stocks in a blind trust as soon as they enter Congress. This requirement would help eliminate the perception of impropriety in the halls of Congress, and it would reaffirm to our citizens that their lawmakers are working for the interests of the people they serve — not their own financial interests.

Additionally, I believe that the Citizens United ruling is one of the most destructive decisions ever handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court. It ushered in an era of unchecked and unaccounted for political spending. I support campaign finance reform and efforts to reduce the influence of money in politics. I support efforts to bring greater transparency to campaign finance, overturn the Citizens United decision, and block illegal foreign funds from influencing our elections.

I do not not accept corporate PAC money, because when I meet with businesses – small or large – across our district, I want voters to know it’s because they’re giving me insights that matter to my job as a representative, not corporate PAC dollars for my campaign.

I have a record of working tirelessly to draft and pass commonsense legislation that matters to the people I represent – whether they voted for me or not. I pursue policy solutions with Members of Congress from across the political spectrum, and I’m consistently ranked one of the most bipartisan Members of Congress by the nonpartisan Lugar Center.

I also proudly serve as vice chair of the Problem Solvers Caucus, which is a group of 29 Democrats and 29 Republicans committed to working together to address some of the country’s greatest challenges.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Led the introduction of legislation, the TRUST in Congress Act, with U.S. Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) to ban Members of Congress, their spouses, and their immediate children from trading individual stocks while in public office.
    • Helped lead a successful effort to block Members of Congress from giving themselves a pay raise.
    • Hosts regular town halls so voters may ask direct questions.
    • Introduced and passed legislation as part of the For the People Act that would help prevent current cyber, terror, and foreign-based threats to U.S. election systems.
  • Cosponsored the No Budget, No Pay Act, meaning that if lawmakers can’t pass a budget, they can’t receive a salary.

Economy & Jobs

CUTTING COSTS & GROWING VIRGINIA’S ECONOMY
Virginians are getting squeezed by rising prices on gas and food, which is why I’m committed to addressing inflation head on. I’ve prioritized getting products back on our shelves, lowering the costs of consumer goods, and combatting consolidation and price-gouging in several major industries. We cannot ignore this major economic crisis.

Virginia has consistently been ranked the #1 state for business in America — but we can and must do more to keep it that way. In Congress, I am focused on making smart investments in our workforce, fixing outdated physical infrastructure, cutting red tape for Virginia’s small businesses, and creating family-sustaining jobs.

Our growing economy also requires physical infrastructure improvements that will keep us competitive with other countries around the world. To support Virginia jobs, I was proud to help negotiate and pass the bipartisan infrastructure law in 2021. This physical infrastructure package will rebuild our roads and bridges, reduce traffic and congestion on Virginia’s highways, and help complete long overdue water infrastructure projects in our region. We are already seeing the benefits here in Virginia’s Seventh District.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, we saw how thousands of Virginia small businesses faced severe challenges. I was proud to provide many of these local businesses with the assistance they needed through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), reduce burdensome regulations that were hurting their operations, and help keep the doors of Virginia’s terrific restaurants, bars, and breweries open. Thanks to the hard work, determination, and ingenuity of Virginia’s business owners and their employees, we are on a path towards a strong recovery.

I also strongly support organized labor, as unions have historically been a driver of economic stability within America’s middle class. This has been true for my own family, as my grandfather — a member of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades — was able to raise his four children as a young widower because of the stability his union employment provided. From conversations with local employers, I know that union apprenticeship programs remain an invaluable asset as they train the next generation of skilled workers.

In Congress, I am committed to making sure our Commonwealth remains the best place to raise a family, start a business, and reach new opportunities.
KEY ACTIONS
Helped negotiate and pass the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act — legislation signed into law that will provide billions of dollars of investments in Virginia’s roads, bridges, airports, pipes, internet networks, and ports.

Awarded the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s “Abraham Lincoln Leadership for America Award,” “Spirit of Enterprise Award,” and the “Jefferson-Hamilton Award for Bipartisanship” for work on legislation important to the business community.

Introduced the bipartisan Strengthening Supply Chains Through Truck Driver Incentives Act to help Virginia trucking companies recruit and retain skilled commercial truck drivers amid a nationwide driver shortage.

Led the effort pushing the Biden administration to invoke the Defense Production Act and lower tariffs on foreign baby formula when the baby formula crisis emerged — and led a bipartisan bill requiring that baby formula manufacturers notify the FDA about potential disruptions.

Led the introduction and passage of the Lower Food and Fuel Costs to help expand access to biofuels like ethanol, as well as address ongoing supply chain challenges across the American energy and agriculture sectors.

Voted to establish the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), which has helped keep the doors of thousands of Virginia restaurants, breweries, and other community businesses open.

Advocated for and successfully secured increased PPP support for Virginia businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Led the introduction of the bipartisan Meat and Poultry Special Investigator Act, which would crack down on anti-competitive practices in the meatpacking industry, level the playing field for Virginia livestock producers, and help lower meat prices at the grocery store.

Successfully pushed for commonsense PPP reforms to help Virginia restaurants and small businesses cover overhead costs during the most difficult days of the pandemic.

Helped negotiate and voted to pass the USMCA trade agreement, opening up new markets for Virginia businesses and farms.

Successfully fought to protect market facilitation program payments to Virginia farmers in the face of the trade war between the United States and China.

Environment & Energy

PROTECTING OUR ENVIRONMENT & PROMOTING CONSERVATION

As a kid, I cherished the time I spent outdoors, trekking through the woods or picnicking in parks with my family. As an adult, I know how lucky we are to have Virginia’s mountains, rivers, and beaches. It is our responsibility to protect these resources for our children and generations to come by investing in alternative and renewable energy sources and decreasing air and water pollution.

Climate change is a direct threat to the safety and strength of America’s future. The science is real — and the next generation of Virginians is counting on us to take this threat seriously. In Congress, I have worked with colleagues in both parties to create good-paying clean energy jobs, lower greenhouse gas emissions, increase energy efficiency, protect our air and water, and safeguard Virginia’s public lands for recreation and conservation alike.

Practical and effective solutions matter most when confronting the climate crisis — and that means bringing more Virginians to the decision-making table on this issue. On the U.S. House Agriculture Committee, I chair the Conservation and Forestry Subcommittee. I know that Virginia is home to many successful conservation efforts, and I have been honored to get to know many agribusinesses and farms that have long deployed voluntary conservation practices that are both beneficial for Virginia’s environment and our region’s economy. I am proud to be their voice in Congress.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Introduced the bipartisan Growing Climate Solutions Act, legislation passed in the U.S. Senate on a vote of 92 to 8 that would improve the ability of farmers and producers to take advantage of carbon markets.
    • Brought several Virginians to testify before the Conservation and Forestry Subcommittee and share their personal experiences in protecting the Commonwealth’s lands and watersheds.
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation to improve upon existing conservation programs and ensure investments in rural America’s infrastructure — including the Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure for Farmers Act and the REAP Improvement Act.
    • Introduced legislation to help new and beginning farmers start or scale up their conservation practices through flexible loans — the Healthy Soil, Resilient Farmers Act.
    • Held multiple roundtables, farm tours, and panels with Virginia conservationists, agribusinesses, and farmers to discuss how we can work together to improve our region’s conservation practices.
    • Cosponsored legislation to require the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to test for lead contamination in the water supply of all schools.
  • Led the introduction of the Climate Readiness Act, which would recognize climate change as a national security threat and require the Pentagon to assess its response strategies.

EXPANDING HIGH-SPEED BROADBAND INTERNET ACCESS

As we saw during the pandemic, reliable access to high-speed broadband internet can determine whether or not Virginians can grow their businesses, finish their homework, or stay connected to vital healthcare services. One of my top priorities in Congress has been to focus on this issue of opportunity and close the digital divide here in our Commonwealth. Since arriving in the U.S. House, I’ve led multiple efforts to expand internet access to everyone in Virginia’s rural communities and in underserved areas across the country.

I also support net neutrality. Legislation protecting net neutrality is vital to ensuring that the internet remains a conduit for free speech and a free market. In an economy that has increasingly moved online, it is imperative that small business owners, educators, and everyday citizens have equal access to the internet.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Voted to pass the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which includes her legislation to help build higher-speed broadband internet networks that meet current demands for uploads and downloads.
    • Voted to pass the American Rescue Plan, which allowed the Virginia General Assembly to allocate more than $700 million for the Commonwealth to be on a path towards universal broadband internet access in the next few years.
    • Hosted multiple broadband summits in the Seventh District’s rural communities to allow local residents to speak directly with federal, state, and local officials about current broadband internet projects and needs.
    • Successfully fought to protect millions of dollars for broadband internet infrastructure for Virginia through the USDA’s ReConnect Program.
    • Announced a $28 million broadband project for additional Virginia counties through the CVEC.
    • Introduced multiple bills to fix the FCC’s outdated and inaccurate broadband maps.
  • Push the FCC to expand wifi hotspots and cut red tape for Virginia schools in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Health & Education

LOWERING HEALTHCARE & PRESCRIPTION DRUG COSTS

Over my past two terms serving the people of Virginia, the dominant concern facing Virginians has been the ability to afford and access healthcare coverage and lifesaving prescription drugs.

I believe no one should have to choose between putting food on the table and getting the care, medication, or treatments they need because of rising prescription drug costs. No one should lose or be denied coverage because of a pre-existing condition like diabetes or cancer, and no one fighting a serious illness should face the fear of lifetime coverage caps.

In conversations across our Virginia communities, I’ve repeatedly heard from our neighbors about the personal impacts of skyrocketing prescription drug prices. I have led and supported measures that would help lower the cost of prescription drugs for Virginia seniors and families, such as giving Medicare the power to negotiate drug prices. I’ve been proud to lead bipartisan legislation passed in the U.S. Housethat would bring greater transparency to prescription drug negotiations and help hold pharmacy benefit managers — the middlemen responsible for many of the price hikes we see today — accountable.

And as the country returns to normal after the COVID-19 pandemic, we are still faced with another pandemic: the substance abuse disorder crisis. During the pandemic, Virginia saw record rates of drug overdoses and overdose-related deaths. To combat this crisis, I have championed programs that expand local access to treatment, and I have proudly worked directly with community leaders, law enforcement officials, religious organizations, and healthcare professionals to provide effective prevention, treatment, and recovery services to those impacted.

We can improve our healthcare system, while lowering costs, protecting coverage, and achieving better outcomes, but it requires tremendous political will and a commitment to look at our options creatively.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation to help increase domestic production of generic drugs, prevent shortages, and reduce U.S. dependence on China for essential medicines.
    • Helped introduce and pass legislation to cap the out-of-pocket cost of insulin at $35 per month.
    • Led the introduction of the Public Disclosure of Drug Discounts Act — which passed in the U.S. House by a vote of 403 to 0 — to hold drug companies accountable.
    • Cosponsored and voted twice to pass the Lower Drug Costs Now Act, which would give Medicare the power to negotiate drug prices.
    • Cosponsored and passed legislation to protect Virginians with pre-existing conditions.
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation to level the playing field for generic drugs and crack down on “patent gaming.”
    • Led several efforts pushing back against drug companies that are illegally raising prescription drug costs for rural healthcare providers and hospitals.
    • Brought the President of the United States to Virginia’s Seventh District, so that families who are struggling to afford their medications could tell their stories directly to him.
  • Convened multiple prescription drug-focused town halls and district-wide healthcare tours in the Seventh District.

PROTECTING SOCIAL SECURITY & MEDICARE

Every Virginian deserves a shot at a secure retirement. I am fiercely committed to protecting Social Security and Medicare, both of which some of my colleagues are now threatening to undermine.

Virginia’s workers have paid into these programs with the understanding that they were paying for retirement security later in life. I oppose any attempts to privatize these systems or to cut benefits that were promised. I will continue to be a reliable voice in support of meeting our obligations to Virginia’s seniors — today and into the future.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Voted to expand Medicare coverage for vision, hearing, and dental for low-income Medicare beneficiaries.
    • Led the introduction of the bipartisan Social Security Fairness Act, which would eliminate the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and the Government Pension Offset (GPO) — two regulations that unfairly reduce or eliminate Social Security benefits for millions of Americans who have devoted much of their careers to public service like police officers, firefighters, teachers, and federal employees.
    • Cosponsored and voted for the Butch Lewis Act — legislation to stabilize multiemployer pensions plans and prevent cuts to thousands of Virginians’ retirement savings — which was signed into law.
  • Voted in support of the SECURE Act, which would make it easier for small businesses to offer retirement plans to employees and for Virginia workers to escalate their retirement savings.

SUPPORTING VIRGINIA STUDENTS

As a proud graduate of Virginia public schools and a mother of three children who attend Virginia public schools, I am committed to strengthening our public education system — including our early childhood programs like Head Start. Our children hold the keys to the future of our economy, our national security, and the health of our communities.

In Congress, I’ve supported increasing access to affordable workforce training and apprenticeship programs for Americans whose path to employment and success does not require a four-year degree.

Additionally, I have championed efforts to help students and their families afford these career and technical education training programs. I am proud to be a tireless advocate for our nation’s students from the day they enter school to the day they graduate— and I want to make sure they have the tools they need to succeed in a competitive, global economy.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation with U.S. Rep. Rob Wittman (R-VA) to allow Virginia students and workers to use their 529 savings to pay for workforce training and credentialing programs.
    • Successfully secured provisions to help Virginia schools expand internet access for their students during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    • Championed commonsense fixes that allowed Virginia schools to have more flexibility in providing free and reduced-price school meals to their students during the pandemic.
    • Led the introduction of the bipartisan Computers for Veterans and Students Act, which would allow certified, nonprofit refurbishing organizations to directly obtain, refurbish, and distribute repairable, surplus government computers to serve veterans headed back to school, students, and seniors in need.
    • Supported expanding Pell Grant eligibility to career and technical education programs — like IT and commercial truck driving programs
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation to allow Head Start programs to receive federal work study dollars and employ more future educators.
    • Cosponsored legislation to encourage more women and minority students to enter STEM fields.
  • Helped introduce the Student Loan Disclosure Transparency Act, which would require monthly disclosures of student loan debt information to borrowers.

Human Rights

SAFEGUARDING FREEDOMS FOR WOMEN

When I was first elected to Congress in 2018, I entered the U.S. House with the largest class of women in history. Despite the history-making year, there is still so much to do to protect women’s rights. As the mother of three young daughters, the future of women’s rights is not only important – but personal.

I am pro-choice. The Supreme Court’s decision to take away a woman’s freedoms, specifically her right to privacy and reproductive healthcare, overturns what has been settled law for nearly half a century. The Court’s decision will have massive consequences for women across the country. I will always support protecting women’s access to reproductive healthcare and federal funding to Planned Parenthood and other providers that ensure healthcare to women and men.

A woman’s right to choose is a profoundly personal issue with real consequences for the lives of American women. Green-lighting states to ban abortion in all cases — including rape or incest — would only endanger the lives of those grappling with the hardest decision of their lives. These harrowing decisions should remain between a woman, her family, and her doctor.

I am also focused on the issue of mothers dying during childbirth at unacceptable rates in Virginia and across our country — particularly in our African American and Hispanic communities. In Congress, I am a Member of the Black Maternal Health Caucus, and I have helped introduce the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act — which focuses on combating high maternal mortality rates, investing in the perinatal workforce, and supporting community organizations carrying out this hard work. In the United States in 2022, no mother should worry about dying during childbirth.

I am also focused on closing the gender pay gap and ensuring women come out of the pandemic with increased work opportunities. According to a recent study, in the Commonwealth, women with full-time jobs are paid an average of $42,342 annually compared to $54,392 for men for the same amount of work. According to the National Partnership for Women and Families, this pay disparity means Virginia women are paid 78 cents for every dollar paid to men for the same amount of work.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Voted for the Women’s Health Protection Act of 2022, which would codify the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision by barring states from banning abortion before fetal viability and in certain cases after that point when a medical provider determines a pregnancy poses a risk to a person’s health.
    • Joined the Black Maternal Health Caucus to reduce inequalities in Black maternal mortality rates in Virginia.
  • Reintroduced the Paycheck Fairness Act, which urges Congress to close the wage gap by requiring employers to prove that pay disparities exist for legitimate, job-related reasons.

DEFENDING RACIAL JUSTICE, EQUITY, AND CIVIL RIGHTS

Every person must be treated with dignity and have equal rights under the law. No person in a free and fair society should make less money, be denied government services, pay more for healthcare, lose a job or housing opportunities, or face discrimination in the community or workplace because of their gender, race, creed, national origin, disability, whom they love, or anything else that defines them.

In Congress, I remain committed to protecting marriage equality and LGBTQ rights — and I’ve been proud to help introduce and pass the Equality Act. I also support the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. I support the rights of individuals with disabilities and will work to preserve the protections afforded under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

I also support criminal justice reform to ensure that our justice system is fairly sentencing offenders regardless of race or economic status, and that we’re addressing issues related to addiction in our jails and prisons. I also support bolstering reentry efforts, which reduce recidivism and ensure that those who have paid their debt to society have the knowledge and resources necessary to become employed and engaged community members.

I’m committed to advancing policies that make important, best practice reforms such as banning chokeholds and no-knock warrants, improving anti-bias training, increasing accountability, limiting the continued militarization of local police departments, and strengthening community relationships. I have worked with lawmakers in both parties on these efforts as well as law enforcement, civil rights, and community organizations.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Helped introduce and pass the Equality Act to protect our LGBTQ neighbors from discrimination.
    • Cosponsored and voted to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act in the U.S. House to address issues of bias and inequity in policing and practices.
    • Helped introduce and pass a resolution to remove the deadline for the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), building on Virginia’s efforts.
  • Cosponsored and voted to pass the Voting Rights Advancement Act to protect the rights of all Americans at the ballot box.

Public Safety

GUN VIOLENCE PREVENTION

Too many Americans die each year due to violence, suicide, or accidents involving firearms — and the unwillingness of some lawmakers to address this problem has left our citizens and our children vulnerable.

As a former federal law enforcement officer, I carried a gun and two extra magazines every day. Because of that, I understand the responsibility that comes with carrying a firearm. I also recognize that most gun owners who own to hunt, for example, are understanding of the responsibility that comes with gun ownership. I support the Second Amendment. I also believe that commonsense gun safety laws are necessary to curb the gun violence epidemic we are facing today.

Addressing gun violence and protecting lives should not be a partisan issue; it is a public safety issue. I support the application of the same background check standard for all firearm purchases, and I have voted multiple times to close online and gun show loopholes. States that require background checks for all purchases have fewer suicides by gun, fewer law enforcement officers shot and killed, and fewer women killed by an intimate partner. 94 percent of Americans support background checks for all firearms purchases, as well as the Law Enforcement Partnership to Prevent Gun Violence and the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police.

I have also voted in favor of additional, commonsense gun legislation — such as limiting high-capacity magazines, strengthening Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs), and raising the assault-style weapons purchase age to 21. I also support a ban on the manufacturing, sale, and transfer of assault-style weapons, which was in place from 1994 to 2004 and dramatically reduced the number and lethality of mass shootings in America.

I also support ensuring that states have the ability to provide current information to the NICS database to ensure informed background checks, and I support funding the research of gun violence as a public health issue. Members of Congress must have the courage to address this problem and implement policies that will help keep our children, law enforcement officers, and communities safe.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Cosponsored and voted to pass the Bipartisan Background Checks Act to require universal background checks on all firearm purchases.
    • Voted to pass the Enhanced Background Checks Act, which would close the Charleston Loophole.
    • Voted to pass the Protecting Our Kids Act, which includes eight commonsense gun violence prevention measures — including raising the assault-style weapons purchase age, promoting safe storage of firearms in homes with children, and cracking down on straw purchases that lead to violent crimes.
    • Voted to pass the U.S. Senate’s bipartisan gun violence prevention legislation, which was signed into law by the President and closes the “boyfriend loophole,” strengthens background checks, incentivizes the adoption of red flag laws, and invests in mental health resources.
    • Serves as a Member of the Gun Violence Prevention Task Force.
    • Cosponsored legislation to fund gun violence prevention research by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
  • Cosponsored the Threat Assessment, Prevention, and Safety (TAPS) Act to prevent targeted violence directed against children, law enforcement, and communities.

FUNDING THE POLICE

As the daughter of a career law enforcement officer, and as a former federal agent, I know what it means to put on the badge. And I know what it is to feel that extra worry when a loved one leaves for work each day. For these reasons – and many more – I am a steadfast supporter of Virginia’s local law enforcement officers.

Virginia’s police officers readily take on roles and responsibilities far outside their job descriptions. In conversations I have with law enforcement across VA-07, I am reminded about the pressing need to retain these dedicated public servants and to recruit additional officers. It is essential that we hire, train, and retain dedicated and honorable men and women to keep our communities safe.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation that was signed into law — the Better Cybercrime Metrics Act — to give law enforcement the tools they need to identify cybercrime, hold criminals accountable, and keep Virginians safe online.
    • Introduced the bipartisan Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) on the Beat Program Reauthorization and Parity Act to increase officer pay, fund community policing initiatives, and help police departments hire more officers.
    • Helped introduce the Invest in Law Enforcement Act, which would make sure police officers in smaller communities and rural areas have additional funding, recruiting tools, and training.
  • Introduced the bipartisan Wally Bunker Healthcare Enhancement for Local Public Safety (HELPS) Retirees Improvement Act to make sure all retired police officers, firefighters, and other public safety officers in Virginia are eligible for a key tax benefit to pay for the healthcare coverage they have earned.

SECURING OUR BORDERS & FIXING OUR BROKEN IMMIGRATION SYSTEM

Our immigration system is broken. In the face of Washington’s hyper-partisanship, I remain committed to finding a bipartisan pathway towards fixing it. I also believe in building a stronger and more effective response to the security and humanitarian situation at our southern border. And as a former federal agent, I oppose any efforts to create safe havens for violent criminals.

As a federal law enforcement officer, I worked on money laundering and narcotics cases. And as a CIA officer, I worked on counterrorism and international drug trafficking cases — so I recognize the threat posed by cartels and transnational criminal organizations. I am committed to pushing back against their influence, preventing their illicit substances — like fentanyl — from coming to America’s streets, and protecting the vulnerable populations on whom they prey.

I also believe that we must address the root causes of instability and violence in Central America that lead to illegal migration, and during my first year in Congress, the President signed into law my bipartisan legislation to combat narcotics trafficking and human smuggling networks in the region. I understand the security threats we face, and I know we can secure our borders and points of entry without breaking from American values or tearing families apart.

America is a nation founded by and strengthened by immigrants. For so many, America is still the land of opportunity – and I believe we should welcome outsiders to our soil via an earned pathway to legal status as long as they abide by the law, work hard, and pay taxes. I am also an advocate for DACA recipients, the young undocumented migrants who did not make the choice to come to America, but were born here.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Cosponsored and voted to pass the Dream and Promise Act.
    • Helped introduce and pass a bipartisan bill to reform the current U.S. immigration system for farmworkers and provide certainty to Virginia farmers, agribusinesses, and greenhouses.
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation to combat the root causes of instability and illegal migration in Central America that was signed into law by then-President Trump.
    • Voted for necessary border security reforms — including additional immigration judges, increased pay for Customs and Border Protection officers, and improved technology to detect drugs at ports of entry.
    • Urged the Biden Administration to delay lifting Title 42 until a comprehensive plan is in place to address the security and humanitarian crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border.
    • Helped lead legislation to strengthen America’s ability to stop fentanyl from coming across the southern border.
    • Visited the southern border with Democrats and Republicans to see the humanitarian situation at the border firsthand.
  • Cosponsored legislation to strengthen technologies that identify and intercept illicit drugs coming through America’s ports of entry.

STRENGTHENING OUR NATIONAL SECURITY

As a former CIA case officer, I have devoted my career to identifying the threats facing our country. Now, as a Member of the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee, I have been focused on advancing a tough, smart national security strategy.

Across the globe, we are seeing the hubris and alarming rise of autocracies — from China to Russia. In the face of aggression, I believe that we need to stand strong as a beacon of democracy, maintain strong relationships with our allies and security partners, and invest in our economic competitiveness here at home. I have voted to provide military and humanitarian aid to the people of Ukraine, and I have pushed for greater investments in American industries to reduce our dependence on companies tied to the Chinese Communist Party.

Our elected leaders should understand and acknowledge the interconnected nature of our national security, our foreign policy, and our economic prosperity. We must also continue to value and support our military, diplomats, intelligence officers, and civil servants, as they work together to serve our country and protect our nation. And as our country continues to be threatened by foreign adversaries, we also need to take real, concrete steps to strengthen our election, telecommunications, and national security systems.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Introduced bipartisan legislation that was signed into law by then-President Trump to strengthen America’s 5G networks and protect against foreign-based cyberthreats.
    • Led bipartisan legislation to repeal outdated Authorizations for the Use of Military Force (AUMFs) and reassert the role of Congress in decisions of war and peace.
    • Voted to pass the bipartisan Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act that authorized the United States to enter into lend-lease agreements with Ukraine to provide additional U.S. military equipment
    • Voted to pass the bipartisan Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations Act to deliver additional military aid, economic support, and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine as it fends off Putin’s invasion.
    • Led Members of the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee in urging the State Department to designate Russia as a State Sponsor of Terrorism.
    • Voted to pass the COMPETES Act to strengthen America’s competitiveness in key industries like semiconductor production — and led efforts to make Virginia a hub of these new operations.
    • Introduced legislation passed in the U.S. House that would require online political ads to boost their transparency and make clear any foreign connections.
    • Led the introduction of a resolution that passed in the U.S. House and U.S. Senate to block the sale of offensive weapons to Saudi Arabia that could be used to target civilians.
  • Led and joined several congressional efforts to reevaluate and repeal existing Authorizations for Use of Military Force (AUMFs).

HONORING VETERANS & MILITARY FAMILIES

Unemployment, homelessness, and suicide rates among our nation’s veterans are unacceptably high, and I’ve worked to ensure that we, as a country, make the process of transitioning from active duty to civilian life a positive one for our veterans.

In Congress, I’m also working to protect veterans’ continued access to quality healthcare through our VA system and strengthen programs to improve our veterans’ transitions to the civilian workforce through credentialing, education, and job training programs. I will never stop fighting to make sure our nation’s veterans and their families receive the benefits they’ve earned through their selfless service, including mental health benefits.

I have also been doggedly focused on addressing the impact of toxic exposures on America’s veterans, and I am fighting to make sure these veterans receive the healthcare and recognition they deserve.

KEY ACTIONS
    • Cosponsored and voted to pass the bipartisan Honoring our PACT Act to support American veterans facing service-connected healthcare challenges due to toxic exposures during their time in the military.
    • Introduced the bipartisan Michael Lecik Military Firefighters Protection Act and worked with the late Mike Lecik, a Virginia veteran who faced exposure-related illnesses, to write this legislation — which would provide veteran military firefighters with the same presumptions of service-connected disability as their civilian counterparts.
    • Led the successful charge to establish an annual designation of “National Atomic Veterans Day” to honor America’s atomic veterans — many of whom were sworn to secrecy and never received the medical care, compensation, or recognition they earned for their service.
    • Introduced the William Collins Jet Fuel Exposure Recognition Act — named after a Virginia U.S. Air Force veteran living with Parkinson’s — to press the VA to conduct additional investigations into the dangerous impacts of consistent jet fuel exposure among U.S. servicemembers.
    • Introduced the bipartisan Computers for Veterans and Students Act (COVS), which would allow certified, nonprofit refurbishing organizations to directly obtain, refurbish, and distribute repairable, surplus government computers to serve veterans, students, and seniors in need.
    • Successfully pressed the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to better address the needs of the growing women veteran population.
    • Helped introduce legislation that would allow the VA to reimburse veterans for emergency ambulance transportation to non-VA hospitals.
    • Supported legislation to improve mental health services coordination between veterans groups and other organizations to combat rising rates of veteran deaths by suicide.
  • Led the introduction of a bipartisan resolution to establish “Purple Star Families Week” to honor and stand with the families impacted by veteran suicide across the country.

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Abigail Anne Spanberger[1] (née Davis, August 7, 1979) is an American politician serving as the U.S. representative from Virginia’s 7th congressional district since 2019. She is a member of the Democratic Party. Her district includes most of the northern suburbs of Richmond, as well as some exurban territory around Fredericksburg. Spanberger is a former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) officer.[2]

Spanberger defeated Republican incumbent Dave Brat in 2018, ending the Republican Party’s 36-year hold on the district. She won reelection in 2020 and 2022.[3][4]

Early life and education

Abigail Spanberger was born in Red Bank, New Jersey, on August 7, 1979.[5] When she was 13, her family relocated to the Short Pump area in Henrico County in Virginia, outside Richmond. She attended John Randolph Tucker High School.[2] Spanberger was later a page for U.S. Senator Chuck Robb.[2]

Spanberger earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia and a Master of Business Administration from a joint program between the GISMA Business School in Germany and Purdue University‘s Krannert School of Management.[2]

Early career

In 2002 and 2003, Spanberger taught English literature as a substitute teacher at the Islamic Saudi Academy in Northern Virginia.[6] In the early 2000s, she was a postal inspector, working on money laundering and narcotics cases.[7]

In 2006, Spanberger joined the Central Intelligence Agency as an operations officer.[8] She said she gathered intelligence about nuclear proliferation and terrorism.[9]

In 2014, Spanberger left the CIA and entered the private sector. She was hired by Royall & Company (now EAB).[10] In 2017, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe appointed her to the Virginia Fair Housing Board.[11]

U.S. House of Representatives

Elections

2018

Spanberger speaking at a campaign rally on election day eve in 2018

In July 2017, Spanberger announced her candidacy for the United States House of Representatives in Virginia’s 7th congressional district in the 2018 election against incumbent Republican Dave Brat, a Tea Party movement member.[12][13][14] She made the final decision to run after the House of Representatives voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act.[7] On June 12, 2018, Spanberger defeated Dan Ward in the Democratic primary election with 73% of the vote, receiving more votes than any other candidate in the Virginia primaries that day.[15][16] Her campaign outraised Brat’s.[17]

In August, the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC closely aligned with Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, conducted a smear campaign against Spanberger. The smear campaign, which attempted to tie her to terrorism, was based on an SF-86 application she completed to obtain security clearance, which was inappropriately released in breach of privacy rules.[18] She won the November 6 general election by just over 6,600 votes.[19] While Brat won eight of the district’s ten counties, Spanberger dominated the two largest counties, Henrico and Chesterfield, by a combined margin of over 30,000 votes.[20]

In a visit to the district, former Trump adviser Steve Bannon described it as “an absolute bellwether of the entire country”, adding that losing the district would mean the GOP losing control of the House.[21]

A number of sources claimed Spanberger was the first Democrat to win this seat since 1970, when four-term Democrat John Marsh retired and was succeeded by Republican J. Kenneth Robinson.[22] But until 1993, the 7th stretched from the outer Washington suburbs through the Shenandoah Valley and Charlottesville to the outer Richmond suburbs;[23] the present 7th is geographically and demographically the successor to what was the 3rd district before 1993.[24]

2020

Spanberger faced a close reelection contest against State Delegate Nick Freitas, who represents much of the congressional district’s northern portion. She won with 51% of the vote to Freitas’s 49%. Freitas carried eight of the district’s ten counties, as Brat had done two years earlier. But Spanberger again prevailed by winning the district’s shares of Henrico and Chesterfield counties by a combined 43,400 votes, five times her overall margin of 8,400 votes.[25] She was also boosted by Joe Biden narrowly carrying the district;[26] Biden is the first Democrat to win what is now the 7th since 1948.

On November 5, days after winning reelection by a margin of 1.8%,[27] Spanberger criticized the Democratic Party‘s strategy for the 2020 elections in a phone call with other Democratic caucus members that was subsequently leaked.[28] Calling the elections “a failure” from a congressional standpoint, she singled out Republican attack ads decrying “socialism” and the movement to “defund the police” as prime reasons the Democratic Party lost seats in swing districts. She argued that Democrats should watch Republican ads before deciding how to talk about issues and “not ever use the word ‘socialist’ or ‘socialism’ ever again”.[29]

CNN political editor Chris Cillizza described Spanberger’s remarks as “some hard truth” for the Democratic Party, adding that in order to succeed in the 2022 and 2024 elections, the party should “listen to the likes of Spanberger” instead of pushing for “the boldest possible progressive legislation”.[30] Spanberger’s remarks were disputed by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who noted that Democrats kept the House, and progressive Representative Rashida Tlaib, who said the Democratic Party should “study the results” before dismissing progressives who represent their districts.[29] The Washington Post digital editor James Downie criticized Spanberger’s view, remarking that if a losing officeholder “couldn’t manage to tie his or her Republican opponent to almost a quarter of a million COVID-19 deaths in the United States, a tanked economy or a dozen other policy fiascos, that’s the candidate’s fault.”[31] Downie quoted progressive Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who had noted that no swing-district House Democrat who co-sponsored Medicare for All lost their seat, and had remarked in response to Spanberger’s comments that “not a single member of Congress that I’m aware of campaigned on socialism or defunding the police in this general election.”[31][32]

Committee assignments

Spanberger’s committee assignments include:[33][34]

Caucus memberships

Political positions

Some commentators have characterized Spanberger as a centrist Democrat.[38][39] In the 2019 Speaker of the United States House of Representatives election on the opening day of the 116th United States Congress, Spanberger voted for U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos, an Illinois Democrat, joining 11 other Democrats who did not back Nancy Pelosi.[40]

Abortion

Spanberger supports legal abortion.[41]

Economy

Although not a member of Congress when it passed, Spanberger criticized the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act supported by President Donald Trump, arguing that its permanent tax cuts for corporations would increase the national debt.[41]

Spanberger has called for the passage of the USMCA trade deal negotiated between the Trump administration, Mexico, and Canada.[42][43]

In May 2020, Spanberger voted against the HEROES Act, a proposed $3 trillion stimulus package in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.[44] She said the bill went “far beyond” pandemic relief and had no chance of passing the Republican-controlled Senate.[45] In November 2020, Spanberger led a bipartisan effort to secure the 340B Drug Pricing Program against changes that would lead to significant increases in prescription medication costs.[46]

Spanberger supports banning members of Congress from trading stocks. She has introduced legislation that would require lawmakers, as well as their spouses and dependent children, to place assets in a blind trust while in office.[47]

Environment

Spanberger has called climate change “one of the greatest and most imminent threats to our economy, our national security, and our way of life” and promised to “stand up to attacks against science.”[41] During a Committee on Foreign Affairs meeting in 2019, Spanberger asked the Trump administration to reverse its isolationist policies, saying, “it’s in [the US’s] national interest to reinforce our stature as a global leader on international environmental and energy issues.”[48]

She described the Green New Deal proposed by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as a “bold compilation of ideas meant to address global climate change” but criticized it for allegedly including unrelated policy proposals and not identifying specific resolutions to the problems that it identifies. “Overall I am not a supporter of the Green New Deal”, she said.[49]

Guns

Spanberger has called for a new version of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban that expired in 2004. She favors requiring background checks on private gun sales and supported a ban on bump stocks.[41]

Health care

Spanberger supports the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).[41] She supports a public option for healthcare via the proposed Medicare-X Choice Act.[44] In November 2020, she described reducing the cost of prescription drugs as “the top priority of families in [her] district”.[46]

In January 2020, Spanberger sponsored the Public Disclosure of Drug Discounts Act, which passed the House unanimously. The bill requires pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), who manage prescription drug benefits for health insurance companies, to publicize the rebates, discounts, and price concessions they negotiate, via a website hosted by the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. Spanberger also co-sponsored the Elijah Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act, which grants Medicare Part D the power to negotiate prescription prices directly with drug companies.[50]

Immigration

Spanberger objected to Trump’s travel bans from certain predominantly Muslim countries and argued that they would aid jihadist propaganda by allowing a portrayal of the United States as an anti-Muslim country. She has voiced her support for stronger border security measures but opposes Trump’s proposed wall.[41] She voted for a bill that included funding for border infrastructure, technology at ports of entry and more customs and border patrol agents. She said she does not support “sanctuary cities” but also called the term “a campaign slogan a lot of people get caught up in.” She added that it “degrades the value of the conversation if we’re not actually talking about what the real concern is.”[49] Spanberger called for a pathway to legal status for undocumented immigrants who abide by the laws, work, and pay taxes.[41]

Spanberger voted to allow U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to be notified when undocumented immigrants attempt to purchase firearms, and voted against the House budget in summer 2019 because it failed to acknowledge the growing national debt.[44]

Donald Trump

According to FiveThirtyEight's congressional vote tracker, Spanberger voted with President Donald Trump 6.9% of the time—about one seventh of the expected tally (49.1%) when factoring in the district’s partisan leaning and general partisanship in Congress.[51] In the 2016 presidential election, Trump defeated Hillary Clinton with 50% of the vote to her 44% in Spanberger’s congressional district.[52]

On September 23, 2019, Spanberger joined six other freshman House Democrats with national security backgrounds in calling for an impeachment inquiry into Trump. They co-wrote a Washington Post opinion piece explaining their support for an impeachment inquiry, writing: “Congress must determine whether the president was indeed willing to use his power and withhold security assistance funds to persuade a foreign country to assist him in an upcoming election.” They wrote that if the allegations were true, they amounted to “a flagrant disregard for the law” and “a threat to all we have sworn to protect.”[53] Spanberger later announced that she would vote in favor of impeachment. “The President’s actions violate his oath of office, endanger our national security, and betray the public trust”, she said.[54]

On June 1, 2020, Spanberger tweeted criticism of Trump’s reaction to the George Floyd protests, a series of protests against police brutality that began in Minneapolis on May 26. On June 2, The Washington Post and The New York Times quoted Spanberger and several other high-profile former CIA analysts’ interpretations of Trump’s reaction to the protests as reminiscent of the reaction of totalitarian dictators on the brink of losing control of their dictatorships. “As a former CIA officer, I know this playbook, and I know the president’s actions are betraying the very foundation of the rule of law he purports to support, the U.S. Constitution”, she said.[55][56][57] Spanberger took issue with Trump after police used tear gas and rubber bullets on peaceful protestors and a priest during the George Floyd protests to clear a path so that he could have a photo op in front of St. John’s Episcopal Church.[58][55]

Spanberger opposed Democrats’ attempts to amend the Insurrection Act of 1807, saying that amending the rarely used law would not accomplish what Democrats intended.[44]

Joe Biden

As of June 2022, Spanberger had voted in line with Joe Biden‘s stated position 100% of the time.[59]

In a November 2021 interview with the New York Times, Spanberger criticized Biden after the 2021 Virginia gubernatorial election, saying, “Nobody elected him to be F.D.R., they elected him to be normal and stop the chaos.”[60] She also said the Democrats had not sufficiently recognized that “inflation is a problem”.[61]

Electoral history

2018 Democratic primary results[62]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Abigail Spanberger 33,210 72.68
DemocraticDaniel Ward12,48327.32
Total votes45,693 100.0
Virginia’s 7th congressional district, 2018[63]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Abigail Spanberger 176,079 50.34
RepublicanDave Brat (incumbent)169,29548.40
LibertarianJoe Walton4,2161.21
N/AWrite-ins2130.06
Total votes349,803 100.0
Democratic gain from Republican
Virginia’s 7th congressional district, 2020[64]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Abigail Spanberger (incumbent) 230,893 50.82
RepublicanNick Freitas222,62349.00
N/AWrite-ins8230.18
Total votes454,339 100.0
Democratic hold
Virginia’s 7th congressional district, 2022[64]

(as of 11-Nov-2022, 215 precincts of 226 reporting)

PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Abigail Spanberger (incumbent) 140,517 51.94
RepublicanYesli I. Vega 129,39647.83
N/AWrite-ins6410.24
Total votes270,554
Democratic hold

Personal life

Spanberger is married to Adam Spanberger, and they have three daughters. In 2014, the family moved back to Henrico County. They live in Glen Allen, Virginia.[65][66] She identifies as a Protestant.[67]

See also

References

  1. ^ “Abigail Spanberger (Col ’01)”. University of Virginia Magazine. UVA Alumni Association. October 19, 2017. Retrieved October 24, 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d “Abigail Spanberger’s passion for languages led her to the CIA”. The Richmond Times-Dispatch website. Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  3. ^ “Virginia Election Results: Seventh Congressional District”. The New York Times. November 3, 2020. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved November 6, 2020.
  4. ^ “Spanberger narrowly defeats GOP challenger in closely watched House race in Virginia”. NBC News. Retrieved November 10, 2022.
  5. ^ Gonzales, Nathan L. (October 12, 2017). “Candidate Conversation – Abigail Spanberger (D)”. Inside Elections. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  6. ^ Vozzella, Laura (September 11, 2018). “Saudi School Dominates TV Ads in Race for Suburban Richmond Congressional Seat”. The Washington Post. Retrieved September 17, 2019.
  7. ^ a b “This former CIA officer says she can beat Virginia Rep. Dave Brat”. The Washington Examiner website. May 30, 2018. Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  8. ^ “Former CIA Officer Abigail Spanberger is on a mission for Virginia’s 7th District”. RVA Magazine. Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  9. ^ “The operative: Abigail Spanberger”. The Chesterfield Observer website. June 6, 2018. Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  10. ^ Who are they? Virginia’s fresh faces in Congress, WTKR, Nick Boykin, January 4, 2019. Retrieved November 14, 2020.
  11. ^ Hall, Madison (November 5, 2020). “RESULTS: Nick Freitas squares off against Democratic incumbent Abigail Spanberger in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District”. www.msn.com. Retrieved June 17, 2021.
  12. ^ Kim, Clare (June 10, 2014). “Eric Cantor loses GOP primary to tea party challenger Dave Brat”. MSNBC. Retrieved November 14, 2020.
  13. ^ “Abigail Spanberger becomes the fifth female candidate vying for the Democratic nomination to run against Republican Congressman Dave Brat”. Elle.com. July 11, 2017. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  14. ^ ‘It’s grilling time’: Five women line up to challenge Rep. Brat”. The Washington Post. July 24, 2017. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  15. ^ Wilson, Patrick (June 12, 2018). “Abigail Spanberger easily defeats Dan Ward in 7th District Democratic primary”. The Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  16. ^ “Spanberger wins Democratic primary in Virginia’s 7th Congressional District”. The Washington Post. Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  17. ^ “Open Secrets breakdown of the 7th District”. Open Secrets website. Retrieved July 17, 2018.
  18. ^ Harwood, John (August 31, 2018). “Democratic House candidate Abigail Spanberger suffers the kind of election year smear John McCain would recognize”. CNBC. Retrieved November 29, 2020.
  19. ^ Almukhtar, Sarah (November 7, 2018). “Virginia’s 7th House District Election Results: Dave Brat vs. Abigail Spanberger”. The New York Times. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  20. ^ “Virginia House”. CNN. Archived from the original on November 9, 2018. Retrieved October 24, 2020.
  21. ^ Spinelli, Dan. “Abigail Spanberger Just Beat Tea Party Darling Dave Brat in Virginia”. Mother Jones. Retrieved November 29, 2020.
  22. ^ Christina Wilkie (November 11, 2018). “After nearly 50 years of Republican control, this Virginia House district could flip to the Democrats”. CNBC.
  23. ^ See, for instance, a map of the 7th in 1990
  24. ^ See, for instance, a map of the 3rd in 1990
  25. ^ Election results from CNN
  26. ^ Virginia presidential results by congressional district from Virginia Department of Elections
  27. ^ Newsroom, NBC12. “Abigail Spanberger declares victory over Freitas in 7th Congressional District race”. nbc12.com. Retrieved November 7, 2020.
  28. ^ “Spanberger criticizes Democrats’ strategy in caucus call”. The Washington Post. November 5, 2020. Retrieved November 7, 2020.
  29. ^ a b Siegel, Benjamin (November 6, 2020). ‘It was a failure’: House Democrats grapple over surprise 2020 losses”. ABC News. Retrieved November 27, 2020.
  30. ^ Cillizza, Chris (November 6, 2020). “Analysis: This Democratic congresswoman just spoke some hard truth to her party”. CNN. Retrieved November 28, 2020.
  31. ^ a b Downie, James (November 8, 2020). “Democratic leaders play a ridiculous blame game with progressives”. The Washington Post. Retrieved November 14, 2020.
  32. ^ Tapper, Jake (November 8, 2020). “State of the Union: Interview with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY)”. Cable News Network. Retrieved November 27, 2020.
  33. ^ “SPANBERGER SELECTED TO SERVE ON U.S. HOUSE COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN AFFAIRS & U.S. HOUSE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE”. Office of Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger. U.S. House of Representatives. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
  34. ^ “Peterson Announces House Agriculture Subcommittee Chairs for the 116th Congress”. January 24, 2019. Archived from the original on January 30, 2019. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
  35. ^ “BLUE DOG COALITION ANNOUNCES LEADERSHIP, NEW MEMBERS FOR THE 116TH CONGRESS”. Blue Dog Coalition. November 27, 2018. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  36. ^ “New Democrat Coalition Inducts 30 Members-Elect and Elects New Leadership”. New Democrat Coalition. November 30, 2018. Archived from the original on February 3, 2019. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  37. ^ “Featured Members”. Problem Solvers Caucus. Retrieved March 28, 2021.
  38. ^ Pope, Michael (June 13, 2018). “Democrats Didn’t Always Pick The Most Progressive Candidate And That Might Help Them In November”. WVTF. Retrieved August 27, 2019.
  39. ^ Gambino, Lauren (July 20, 2019). “The moderate squad: swing-state Democrats wary of leftward path”. The Guardian. Retrieved August 27, 2019.
  40. ^ CNN Wire (January 4, 2019). “Virginia congresswoman one of 12 Democrats to oppose Pelosi’s bid for speaker”. Channel 3, WTKR. Tribune Broadcasting. Retrieved January 18, 2019.
  41. ^ a b c d e f g Wilson, Patrick (October 27, 2018). “A look at where Brat and Spanberger stand on the issues”. Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved September 28, 2019.
  42. ^ “Spanberger Pushes for Final Progress on USMCA: “We Need to Get this Done” (Press release). spanberger.house.gov.
  43. ^ “Why these Democrats want to make a trade deal with Trump”. Politico.
  44. ^ a b c d Flynn, Meagan. “In a historically Republican stronghold, Democrat Abigail Spanberger looks to hang on”. The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved November 28, 2020.
  45. ^ Mattingly, Justin. “Spanberger opposes latest stimulus package, saying it ‘goes far beyond pandemic relief’. Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved November 28, 2020.
  46. ^ a b “Spanberger leads bipartisan effort to save 340B Drug Pricing Program”. Augusta Free Press. November 15, 2020. Retrieved November 28, 2020.
  47. ^ Christina Marcos (December 21, 2021). “Pelosi faces pushback over stock trade defense”. The Hill. Retrieved January 11, 2022.
  48. ^ McCue, Dan (May 3, 2019). “Citing Threats to National Security, Representative Elaine Luria, Va.-2, Takes Climate Change Head On”. The WELL. Archived from the original on December 17, 2019. Retrieved April 13, 2020.
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External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia’s 7th congressional district

2019–present
Incumbent
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by

United States representatives by seniority
340th
Succeeded by


X

Abigail Spanberger- VA7

Current Position: US Representative since 2019
Affiliation: Democrat
Candidate: 2022 US Representative for District 7

Other Positions:
Vice Chair, Subcommittees Europe, Eurasia, Energy, & the Environment Subcommittee

Pinned Tweet: The Inflation Reduction Act will lower healthcare costs for Virginians. – Seniors will see Medicare out-of-pocket drug prices capped at $2,000/year – Insulin for Medicare patients will be capped at $35/month – Medicare will finally be able to negotiate drug prices

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David Brat

David Alan Brat is the dean of the Liberty University School of Business. A member of the Republican Party, he served as the U.S. Representative for Virginia’s 7th congressional district from 2014 to 2019.

Brat came to national prominence when he defeated House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in the district’s 2014 Republican primary. Brat’s primary victory over Cantor made him the first primary challenger to oust a sitting House Majority Leader since the position’s creation in 1899. Brat lost his reelection bid in 2018 to Democrat Abigail Spanberger

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Joseph Walton

2018 Libertarian Candidate for the US House – Virginia 7th District

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