FIRST ON FOX: A U.S. Marine Corps veteran and security official in Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s administration is aiming to be the first female former Marine ever elected to serve in Congress.
In an interview with Fox News Digital, Aliscia Andrews, the deputy secretary of Homeland Security for the Commonwealth of Virginia, announced she was joining the race to try and flip the suburban Democrat-held 10th Congressional District, a seat long coveted by Republicans after the party lost it in 2018.
Democratic Rep. Jennifer Wexton announced earlier this year that she would not seek re-election in the district.
“I joined the Marine Corps when I was 20 years old and had no idea what I was getting myself into,” Andrews told Fox. “It’s incredible to think about what I learned in the Corps and what shaped me as an individual.”
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Virginia Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Aliscia Andrews. (Virginia Department of Public Safety and Homeland Security)
She detailed her time as a Marine intelligence analyst and explained the stresses of knowing how much of an impact every decision and movement around the world could make.
“That’s shaped me so much now … But it’s been applicable to my entire career of looking to see what could happen, what’s likely to happen, and what happens if everything goes out the window,” she said.
When asked why she decided to jump into the race, Andrews told Fox News it was because of the economic, educational and national security challenges she says are threatening the people of the district.
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“The things that we’re seeing aren’t getting better,” she said, adding that the fentanyl crisis was claiming the lives of Americans all over the country every day, and that it was “unbelievable” to see the slow reaction from the federal government in dealing with that slew of problems.
Aliscia Andrews, a Republican candidate for Virginia’s 10th Congressional District. (Aliscia Andrews)
Andrews was sworn into Youngkin’s administration on the day of his inauguration as the 74th governor of Virginia, and she began serving as a cybersecurity official before being appointed to her current role.
She touted that experience in a video accompanying her campaign announcement but also ripped the “reckless spending” she said was coming out of Washington, D.C., and lamented the pressures on families due to subsequent economic challenges, the effects of COVID-19 shutdowns on schools, and the Biden administration’s “failed” border policies.
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Citing those same areas of concern, Andrews told Fox she was the best choice to represent Virginia’s 10th Congressional District because she was “listening to families” telling her the issues most affecting them.
“It’s more expensive now to live than ever before. Families are having to make hard decisions when it comes to their mortgages, when it comes to their groceries, when it comes to their childcare. It’s impacting us on every single level, and it’s not some MSNBC talking point,” she said.
Rep. Jennifer Wexton, D-Va., prepares to cast her ballot at Loudoun County High School as she visits polling places across Virginia’s 10th Congressional District on Nov. 8, 2022, in Leesburg, Virginia. (Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
Andrews joins a crowded primary field of six other Republicans also vying for the party’s nomination, but she likely enjoys an advantage in name recognition as her announcement marks her third time running for the seat. However, this will be her first time running since the redistricting following the 2020 U.S. Census.
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Virginia’s 10th Congressional District, once a key swing district targeted heavily by both parties, has become increasingly easy for Democrats with the growth of the Northern Virginia’s suburbs just outside Washington, D.C.
No Republican has won there since former Rep. Barbara Comstock in 2016.
Get the latest updates from the 2024 campaign trail, exclusive interviews and more at our Fox News Digital election hub.