Tom Garrett vs. who?

Incumbent freshman Rep. Tom Garrett has earned the Republican Party’s nomination in Virginia’s 5th Congressional District, which includes Rappahannock County. As the only candidate to file with the 5th District Republican Committee before the February 28 deadline, the congressman has secured the nomination without opposition.

Outgoing 5th District chair Lynn Tucker issued the following statement:

“I would like to congratulate Congressman Garrett on his nomination as the Republican Party’s candidate for the 5th Congressional District in Virginia. Tom has served us admirably in his first term and the 5th District Republican Party is proud to have him as our standard bearer. The party is united behind him and is confident he will continue to serve us well in Washington.”

Garrett added, “I am humbled to accept the Republican Party’s nomination as their candidate for Virginia’s 5th Congressional District. I will continue to work for the 5th District in D.C. and am confident the voters of the 5th district will re-elect me this November.”

The congressman was first elected in 2016, winning with 58 percent of the vote. The margin earned him the most votes ever for a 5th District congressional candidate.

Before serving in Congress, Garrett was a state senator from 2011-2016. He also served for six years as an artilleryman in the U.S. Army and as a Commonwealth’s Attorney.

Garrett still awaits a Democratic opponent for the Tuesday, November 6th election. Democratic Party caucuses will be held in each of the district’s counties in mid-April to elect delegates, who will then attend the party’s convention in Farmville set for Saturday, May 5th, where one of four Democratic hopefuls will be elected to face the congressman.

Democratic candidates include Leslie Cockburn of Rappahannock County, as well as Charlottesville area residents Ben Cullop, Andrew Sneathern, and Roger Dean Huffstetler.

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John McCaslin is the editor of the Rappahannock News. Email him at