Cardwell runs for U.S. House as ‘citizen legislator’ is your source for free news and information in Williamsburg, James City & York Counties.

Pat Cardwell
Pat Cardwell

Pat Cardwell says he is not entrenched in politics—rather, he argues, he is working in the trenches of his community.

“You get a more well-rounded understanding of people you’re going to represent and what their concerns are,” Cardwell said.

In his campaign for the 2nd District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, Cardwell said he would be a citizen legislator committed to honest and accountable leadership.

Cardwell, 53, of Virginia Beach is competing against U.S. Congressman Randy Forbes (R-Dist. 4) and Del. Scott Taylor (R-Dist. 85) in tomorrow’s primary election. The winner will take on Democrat Shaun Brown in the November general election.

The current 2nd District representative, Scott Rigell, announced in January he would not seek re-election. Redistricting earlier this year moved most Historic Triangle residents out of the 1st District and into the 2nd District.

Cardwell, an attorney, said he quit his law practice to run for office. If he is elected, he said he would only commit to eight years in Congress, as he does not want to be “drawn into the power and the money and K Street lobbyists.”

He said he would call for reducing federal spending through a “penny plan” and advocate for the savings to be directed to defense budgets.

If elected, Cardwell said he would make two pledges—first, to hold regular town hall meetings where constituents are welcome to “give [him] an earful,” and second, to build grassroots support to pass legislation, such as a bill to eliminate the congressional pension plan.

“Grassroots is going to be a big part of my effort bring people together,” Cardwell said. “I’m going to hold rallies and meetings to get people together on both sides of the water to deal with the issues and make them part of my team.”

Two primary elections will be held on Tuesday. Check out our election preview to find out if you can vote in the 2nd Congressional District race.