What Virginia Rep. Donald McEachin's death means for the new Congress
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With the death of Virginia Democratic Rep. Donald McEachin, the new Congress will begin with a vacancy until there is a special election to fill that seat.
As a reminder, you cannot be appointed to the House of Representatives.
McEachin's untimely death leaves House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., no breathing space in his bid to become Speaker. The new Congress will begin with 434 members. The magic number for McCarthy remains 218 - an absolute majority of the entire body.
McEachin dies as the seventh member of the 118th Congress.
VIRGINIA DEMOCRATIC REP. DONALD MCEACHIN DEAD AT 61 AFTER BATTLING COLON CANCER
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Rep. Elect Luke Letlow, R-La, died before taking office in late 2020, shortly after the election.
The following members have also passed away:
Late. Representatives Ron Wright, R-Texas, Alcee Hastings, D-Fla., Jim Hagedorn, R-Minn., Don Young, R-Alaska, Jackie Walorski, R-Ind. and McEachin.
Congressman McEachin died Monday at the age of 61 after a battle with colon cancer.
McEachin was first elected to Congress in 2016 and served in the 4th Circuit of Virginia. He was re-elected to the House of Representatives for a fourth term earlier this month.
Congresswoman Chief of Staff Tara Rountree released a statement Monday night announcing McEachin's death.
"We are all devastated by the death of our boss and friend, Congressman Donald McEachin," Rountree wrote. “For years we have watched bravely as he battles and triumphs over the side effects of his 2013 colon cancer. Tonight he lost that fight and the people of Virginia's fourth congressional district lost a hero who always, always fought for them and put them first."
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The statement continued: "Until a new representative is elected, our office will remain open and continue to serve our constituents. The family is asking for privacy at this time. Agreements will be announced in the next few days.”
McEachin was the third African American to represent Virginia in the US House of Representatives.
Fox News' Landon Mion contributed to this report.
Minority Leader of the US House of Representatives (born 1965)
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