Navy vet, aid worker, former Trump press aide among GOP women targeting Dem House seats in 2022

The NRCC has expanded its list of targeted House races to flip from 57 to 70.

Updated: December 4, 2021 - 10:40pm

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A veteran, a former aid worker in Afghanistan, and a 24-year-old former White House official are among the roster of House GOP female candidates seeking to flip Democratic seats in 2022.

E-PAC, which was founded by House GOP Conference Chair Rep. Elise Stefanik, endorsed 8 female candidates this week. Stefanik held a news conference with the candidates and discussed the 2022 midterms during an interview with Just the News.

Citing "inflation, government overreach, this war on parents and students that we saw play out firsthand in Virginia, a crisis of crime, the border crisis," Stefanik said: "These issues matter to the American people, and Joe Biden has failed again and again and again."

Amanda Adkins is running against Democratic incumbent Sharice Davids in Kansas' Third Congressional District. She works as an executive at the Cerner Corporation, which is a "global Kansas City-based healthcare and information technology company," according to the biography on her official website.

"Business leaders do not believe that [inflation is] going away anytime soon, and it's having a really big impact on their day-to day-work," she said. "Consumers, just individuals in the district, I think people believe that it's here to stay for a while, and they understand completely that much of it is driven by all of the federal spending."

Jeanine Lawson, a member of the Board of Prince William County Supervisors, is running against Democratic incumbent Jennifer Wexton in Virginia's 10th Congressional District.

Lawson elaborated on why she thinks there was a GOP sweep of statewide offices in Virginia's November election.

"It's the constant grab of our money, higher taxes at all levels," she said. "People are feeling that, especially with record inflation. It's the public safety issues. It's this softness on crime, which is just nonsense. People are rejecting this critical race theory, which is an ideology that is counter to everything that Martin Luther King stood for."

Jen Kiggans, a Virginia state senator and nurse practitioner, is running in the commonwealth's Second Congressional District against Democratic Rep. Elaine Luria. She served for a decade in the U.S. Navy as helicopter pilot. Kiggans said southwest Virginia was key to Youngkin's win, and she predicted that the momentum will carry over to the 2022 midterms.

"Hampton Roads was one of those areas, and congressional district two alone, where we were able to flip three out of our seven House of Delegates seats," she said. "So there was a lot of momentum. Virginians especially are very tired of the direction of the Commonwealth and the direction of the country."

Esther Joy King, who was an aid worker in Kabul, Afghanistan, is running in Illinois' 17th Congressional District. Her opponent in the 2020 House race, Rep. Cheri Bustos, currently occupies the seat, but she has announced her retirement. Several Democrats have entered the race

Americans are "embarrassed about what happened Afghanistan, and we're seeing crisis after crisis after crisis," King told Just the News. "Afghanistan is just one example. We have inflation, the most expensive Thanksgiving we've ever had in the history of our country, and people are mad. And so you ask me, ultimately what I'm hearing on the ground is people are not okay with what Washington D.C. is up to right now."

Monica De La Cruz, who is running in Texas' 15th Congressional District, owns an insurance agency. She grew up near the border, according to her biography, and she's seeking to fix the nation's broken immigration system. 

De La Cruz slammed the Biden administration's handling of the U.S.-Mexico border, where record numbers of migrants are showing up without documentation to claim asylum. Many of these migrants are being released into U.S. communities with a notice to report to an Immigration and Customs office at a later date.

"It's not just affecting our local border communities, but this is just a pass-through area," she said. "What it really affects is the entire country. These people are being dropped off as far as Chicago, New York, Dallas, California. So this is an American crisis, not just a border crisis, border city crisis.

"The American people should know where these illegal immigrants are being dropped off. They're being dropped off in the middle of the night, in cities where we don't know where they're at and what their intentions are. This could pose a dangerous threat for American communities." 

Karoline Leavitt is running against Democratic Rep. Chris Pappas in New Hampshire's First Congressional District. She worked as assistant press secretary in the Trump White House.

"We have Hollywood, just our entire culture, is really slamming socialism down the throats of young voters, and they're eating it up," Leavitt said during an interview. "And so as a young person, I felt very compelled in my heart to step up to fight for our great country that allowed my family to live the American dream."

The minimum age of eligibility for election to the House is 25. Now 24, Leavitt would, if elected in 2022, turn 25 by the time she took office in January, 2023 and become the youngest member of Congress.

E-PAC has also endorsed GOP candidate April Becker, who is running for the House seat in Nevada's Third Congressional District, and Lisa Scheller, who is competing to represent Pennsylvania's 7th Congressional District.

Becker is focusing on Biden's energy policies as one of the top issues in her campaign.

"Biden's policy has us shutting down our energy, our fabulous natural resources in Pennsylvania, and seeking to buy energy from Russia and even other hostile nations like China," she said. "All that's going to do is kill Pennsylvania jobs and wreck our economy, not to mention the overall national security risk of having to buy energy at a higher cost from other countries that may not have our best interests at heart."

Following Glenn Youngkin's win in the Virginia governor race, the National Republican Campaign Committee expanded its list of targeted House races to flip from 57 to 70.