News

Del. Dan Helmer becomes fifth candidate in Democratic race for 10th Congressional District

Del. Dan Helmer talks to Moms Demand Action volunteers while campaigning for reelection to the Virginia House of Delegates (via Dan Helmer/Facebook)

And then there were five.

Del. Dan Helmer of Fairfax County announced Wednesday morning that he is joining the race for the Democratic nomination in Virginia’s 10th Congressional District next year.

Helmer, a U.S. Army veteran who was first elected in 2019, led the House Democratic Caucus’ campaign effort this fall, which resulted in Democrats picking up three seats and regaining control of the chamber.

The 10th District is currently represented by Rep. Jennifer Wexton, a Democrat, but Wexton announced earlier this year she will not seek reelection for health reasons.

Other Democrats who have announced campaigns for the seat are:

Loudoun Board of Supervisors Chair Phyllis Randall had been mentioned as a candidate, but she ruled out a run Tuesday, saying she wanted to focus on her third term as board chair.

The 10th District includes all of Loudoun County — making up more than half its voters — along with all of Fauquier and Rappahannock counties and the cities of Manassas and Manassas Park. It also includes the western half of Prince William County and about 15,000 voters in the Clifton and Union Mill areas of southern Fairfax County.

After knocking off Republican Barbara Comstock in 2018, Wexton won reelection to the newly drawn 10th District last year with about 53% of the vote, defeating Republican Hung Cao.

Helmer was reelected Tuesday to House District 10, defeating Republican Jim Thomas with over 58% of the vote. His district covers southwestern Fairfax, including the town of Clifton and the Centreville area. Before redistricting after the 2020 Census, he also represented a small portion of Prince William.

Helmer is the son of an immigrant and the grandson of refugees and Holocaust survivors, according to a news release from his campaign. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and served tours in Iraq, Afghanistan and Korea. He currently owns a small business and continues to serve as a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve.

“My grandparents came to America to escape the Nazis,” Helmer said. “It’s why I volunteered to serve our country and protect the democracy that took us in. While I was proud to serve, I lost friends in Iraq and Afghanistan because politicians lacked the courage to stand up to President Bush’s misguided wars. Our democracy failed us.”

He said democracy faces greater threats today: “MAGA extremists are seeking to undermine free and fair elections and strip away the right to an abortion, all while coddling a gun lobby that floods our streets with weapons of war.”

According to the release, in the General Assembly, Helmer supported gun safety bills, the repeal of Virginia’s “Right to Work” laws and women’s healthcare.

He lives in Fairfax with his wife, Karen, a public school educator, and their two sons.

Photo via Dan Helmer/Facebook. This article was written by FFXnow’s news partner InsideNoVa.com and republished with permission. Sign up for InsideNoVa.com’s free email subscription today.