Human rights lawyer and former Democratic candidate for Virginia state Senate Qasim Rashid announced Monday his bid to represent Virginia's 1st District in the U.S. Congress.
Rep. Rob Wittman, a Republican, has held the seat since 2007.
Rashid, 37, ran against Virginia state Sen. Richard Stuart, R-28th, in 2019 and lost by 15 points. He will face Vangie Williams in the Democratic primary on June 9. Williams won the 2018 Democratic nomination for the seat but was defeated by Wittman in the general election by 10 points.
In a statement released Monday announcing his candidacy, Rashid said his campaign will not be funded by corporations or super PACs. During his 2019 state Senate campaign, Rashid raised more money from small donors than any other state Senate candidate in Virginia.
“The First District of Virginia has been inadequately served by a corporate-funded congressman for too long. It’s time to elect a representative that will serve the district by putting working families, veterans, federal employees, and environmental protection first,” Rashid said.
Rashid is a Muslim American and immigrated from Pakistan as a child with his family to escape religious persecution. He lives in Stafford County with his wife and three children.