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GOP chooses 8th Congressional District nominee, as Democratic primary looms

Karina Lipsman, the Republican nominee for the 8th Congressional District, holds a campaign sign (via Fairfax County Republican Committee/Facebook)

Local Republicans nominated Karina Lipsman on Saturday (May 21) to seek the U.S. House seat currently held by Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.).

Early voting is underway for the June 21 Democratic primary to determine whether Lipsman faces Beyer or challenger Victoria Virasingh in the November general election. Portions of Fairfax County in the new 8th District include McLean, Bailey’s Crossroads, Annandale, and the Route 1 corridor.

At the local GOP’s ranked choice convention, Lipsman earned 61.5% of the votes in the first round of vote counting, according to a press release on her campaign website.

Lipsman came out ahead of four other Republican hopefuls, as the slate of candidates sought to catch the wave that elected Gov. Glenn Youngkin.

Alexandria resident Kezia Tunnell received 19.12% of the vote, and the party’s 2020 nominee Jeff Jordan received 15.92%. McLean resident Monica Carpio and Heerak Christian Kim, a registered nurse and former public school teacher, did not break 2.5%, the release stated.

The 8th District seat has been held by a Democrat for decades. Beyer was first elected in 2014, when he won a crowded primary to succeed former Congressman Jim Moran.

An Arlington resident, Lipsman fled Ukraine when it was still under Soviet Union control and came to the United States with her mother and grandparents, according to her campaign website. They didn’t speak English, survived on food stamps and lived in low-income housing in Baltimore. When she was 18, Lipsman became a U.S. citizen.

She received a bachelor’s degree in economics while she was working full-time in the financial industry, and later earned a master’s in engineering from Johns Hopkins, according to the website. She’s worked in the national defense industry for over a decade.

Her website outlines priorities like supporting law enforcement, opposing tax increases, stopping illegal immigration and her stance against abortion.

She says she supports school choice and community colleges, technical schools, and vocational training programs.

“We must fight the dangerous voices that call for lowering educational standards in the name of equity,” she wrote.

The Fairfax County Democratic Committee has not publicly commented on Lipsman’s nomination, but Arlington Democrats posted to Twitter calling her an “extreme right candidate,” linking to a recording of her allegedly saying “Fauci should be jailed” at a candidate forum.

Lipsman’s website says she will “advocate for common-sense policies that fight crime, reduce inflation, ease transportation and improve our educational standards.”

“Let’s be honest — there are loud extremists on both sides, who benefit from dividing our country, and we cannot let that happen,” Lipsman’s website reads. “Divisive politics are poisonous and we must work together to overcome the gridlock on the critical issues that are facing our country.”

Photo via Fairfax County Republican Committee

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