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Scott Rigell

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Scott Rigell
Scott Rigell, Official Portrait, 112th Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 2nd district
Assumed office
January 3, 2011
Preceded by Glenn Nye
Personal details
Born Edward Scott Rigell
(1960-05-28) May 28, 1960 (age 56)
Titusville, Florida[1]
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Teri Rigell[1]
Children Four children[1]
Alma mater Mercer University (B.B.A.)
Regent University (M.B.A)[1]
Profession Car dealership owner
Religion Protestant[1]
Military service
Service/branch United States Marine Corps Reserve
Years of service 1978–1984
Rank Sergeant USMC-E5.svg

Edward Scott Rigell[2] (born May 28, 1960) is an American businessman, car dealer and politician who has been the U.S. Representative for Virginia's 2nd congressional district since 2011 — and has announced he will not run for re-election in 2016.[3]

Rigell is a member of the Republican Party.


Rigell was raised in Titusville, Florida. He served for six years in the United States Marine Corps Reserve from 1978–1984, attaining the rank of Sergeant. His father served in the Marines in World War II, landing on Iwo Jima, and his son is a Marine. He holds an A.A. from Brevard Community College, a B.B.A. from Mercer University, and a M.B.A. from Regent University.[4]

He and his wife Teri live in Virginia Beach and have four children.[5]

Prior to his election to Congress, Rigell and his wife Teri established, and continue to own, two new car dealerships under the name Freedom Automotive, one in Norfolk and the other in Chesapeake/Virginia Beach.[6]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]



Rigell won the Republican nomination in a six-way race, defeating Bert Mizusawa. The Hill rated his primary race as one of the top seven Congressional primaries for that election cycle.[7] Rigell was considered by many to be the favorite in the primary,[8]because he had support from the National Republican Congressional Committee[9] and Eric Cantor[10] – at least after the primary,[11] and was endorsed by Republican Virginia governor Bob McDonnell.[12]

Rigell came under attack from his primary opponents for the dealerships he owns having sold 138 cars under the Cash for Clunkers program, which Rigell subsequently criticized as "reckless bailouts and an out-of-control federal debt." Rigell noted that buyers, not dealers, received program subsidies for trading up to a more fuel-efficient vehicle. A spokesman said that Rigell felt “an obligation to the people who work for him, and his customers.”[13] He also came under attack for making campaign contributions to Barack Obama during the 2008 Democratic primaries and to Virginia Democrat Louise Lucas in her bid against Randy Forbes.[14] Rigell said he believed that Hillary Clinton would have been a worse option for President.[15]

Rigell states that his top priority is reducing government spending and that he supports replacing the health care law with market-based reforms.[16] As of June 4, 2010, Rigell had contributed $775,000 of his personal wealth to his campaign.[14] Rigell defeated Democratic incumbent Glenn Nye for Virginia's 2nd congressional district.


Rigell was challenged by businessman and Democratic nominee Paul Hirschbiel.


Rigell was challenged by Democrat Suzanne Patrick in the general election.

Rigell said he will focus on economic issues over social issues in the 2014 election. He stated, "I wake up every day not thinking about the social issues. I sought office because I know we can do better on job creation and I’m also concerned about our fiscal trajectory." He added, "I think as part of that we’re strengthening things that are important to women and, of course, to men as well. Early childhood education, making sure that our children are safe and they have great opportunities once they get out of high school or college."[17]


Rigell announced that he will not run for re-election in 2016.[3]


Social issues

Rigell states he is "proudly pro-life",[18] he opposes gay marriage and opposed the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."[19] In 2011, Rigell cosponsored bills to prohibit abortion coverage under the national Affordable Health Care law, prohibit the use of federal funds for Planned Parenthood and prohibit taxpayer funding of abortion. Rigell voted for reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.[20] Rigell has refused to endorse Republican candidate for Lieutenant Governor E.W. Jackson in light of anti-gay comments made by Jackson.[21]

Military issues

Rigell's district includes the largest concentration of active duty and retired service members in the United States. He supported the Veterans' Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) Act, which the House and Senate passed. This bill increased the rate of compensation for veterans who were disabled in active duty.[22] Rigell supports the continued military effort in Afghanistan; he opposed a vote in 2011 to remove troops from the country. However, he also opposed deploying ground troops to Libya, and has joined a bipartisan coalition urging President Obama and Congress to resist “calls for a ‘quick’ and ‘easy’ military intervention in Iraq.”.[23][24]


In 2011, Rigell called the President’s use of force in Libya ‘unconstitutional,’ stating that the military action violated the War Powers Resolution of 1973 since Congress was not consulted. Rigell simultaneously introduced an amendment to the Department of Defense FY'12 Appropriations bill to defund U.S. military operations in Libya, but the amendment failed in the House.


In 2013, following an alleged chemical attack by the Assad Regime in Syria, Rigell wrote a letter to the President urging him to consult Congress, as prescribed by the War Powers Resolution, before authorizing the use of any military force overseas. He was joined by 139 Members of the House of Representatives, 21 of whom were Democrats.[25]

Rigell also supported a bipartisan congressional resolution advocating for the United Nations (UN) to create a Syrian War Crimes Tribunal.[26] The bipartisan resolution, introduced by Representative Chris Smith of New Jersey, called for an immediate ceasefire in Syria and directed the President to work with the UN to set up a tribunal to investigate war crimes committed by both the Syrian government and rebel groups in the country.


Rigell supported Paul Ryan's budget plan, Path to Prosperity, which called for repeal of the 2010 Healthcare legislation. He vocally criticized Senate inaction on the House's budget plans in 2011, stating "Empirically we can show that the bottleneck is in the Senate – I hope every American stands up and says to Senator Reid: get these bills passed, we’ll go to conference, let’s work it out, we’ll work weekends and get this thing moving again."[27] Ultimately, he voted in favor of S 627, the 2011 budget proposal which raised the debt ceiling and required a supercommittee to provide more concrete spending cuts.

Warren Buffett challenge to the GOP

Billionaire Warren Buffett challenged the GOP that he would match any donations to the Treasury they give. Rigell had already been giving back 15% of his salary, and when he flagged this for Buffett, Buffett agreed to match it.[28]

Eric Holder Contempt of Congress

On June 28, 2012, Rigell was one of only two Republicans (along with Steven LaTourette of Ohio) who voted against a motion to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for his handling of the ATF gunwalking scandal.[29]

Committee assignments[edit]

Caucus memberships[edit]

  • Fix Congress Now Caucus – Co-Chairman
  • Job Creators Caucus – Co-Chair
  • Congressional Contaminated Drywall Caucus (CCDC) (Co-Chair)
  • Wounded to Work Caucus (Co-Chair)
  • Aerospace Caucus
  • Air Force Caucus
  • Army Caucus
  • Unmanned Systems Caucus (UAV)
  • Chesapeake Bay Watershed Caucus
  • Coast Guard Caucus
  • Congressional Constitution Caucus
  • Congressional Military Family Caucus
  • Congressional Sportsman's Caucus
  • Defense Communities Caucus
  • EOD Caucus
  • General Aviation Caucus
  • International Religious Freedom Caucus
  • Navy and Marine Corps Caucus
  • New Media Caucus
  • Prayer Caucus
  • Shipbuilding Caucus
  • USO Caucus
  • Values Action Team
  • Zoo and Aquarium Caucus
  • Congressional Coastal Caucus
  • Congressional Common Ground Caucus
  • Congressional Defense Energy Security Caucus
  • Congressional Diabetes Caucus
  • Congressional Shellfish Caucus
  • Republican Study Committee
  • Problem Solvers Caucus (No Labels)

Electoral history[edit]

2010 Republican Congressional Primary, 2nd district[30]
Candidate Votes Percentage
Scott Rigell 14,396 40%
Ben Loyola 9,761 27%
Bert Mizusawa 6,341 17%
Scott Taylor 2,950 8%
Jessica Sandlin 1,620 4%
Ed Maulbeck 1,371 4%
Virginia's 2nd congressional district, general election
Year Republican Votes Pct Democrat Votes Pct Independent Votes Pct
2010[31] Scott Rigell 88,007 53% Glenn Nye 70,306 42% Kenny E. Golden 7,158 4%


  1. ^ a b c d e Blade, Rachel (November 3, 2010). "112th Congress: Scott Rigell, R-Va. (2nd District)". Congressional Quarterly. Retrieved November 7, 2010. 
  2. ^ "Representative Edward Scott Rigell (Scott) (R-Virginia, 2nd) – Biography from LegiStorm" (fee). Retrieved 2013-02-04.  (subscription required)
  3. ^ a b "Congressman Scott Rigell will not run for reelection". 
  4. ^
  5. ^ "RIGELL, E. Scott - Biographical Information". 
  6. ^
  7. ^ Blake, Aaron (November 18, 2009). "Top seven primaries in Congress". The Hill. Retrieved 2013-02-04. 
  8. ^ "McDonnell picking GOP favorite against Nye". December 4, 2009. Retrieved 2013-02-04. 
  9. ^ "National Republican training program promotes two Va. candidates". Washington Post. May 6, 2010. 
  10. ^ Giroux, Greg (April 19, 2010). "Virginia: Cantor Backs Rigell". CQ Politics. Archived from the original on 2010-04-24. 
  11. ^ Newton-Small, Jay (September 22, 2010). "Virginia's 2nd Congressional District: Glenn Nye vs. Scott Rigell". TIME. Retrieved 2013-02-04. 
  12. ^ Walker, Julian (May 12, 2010). "McDonnell to endorse Rigell in GOP congressional primary". Virginian Pilot. 
  13. ^ Fritze, John (May 12, 2010). "Dealers-turned-candidates run into trouble". USA Today. 
  14. ^ a b Gioroux, Greg. Wealthy House Candidate Digs Deeper Ahead Of Tuesday’s Primary. Congressional Quarterly. June 4, 2010.
  15. ^ Pershing, Ben (May 25, 2010). "Rigell's survey says he's the clear frontrunner in GOP race to face Rep. Nye". Washington Post. 
  16. ^ Payne, Kimball (June 6, 2010). "BIO: Scott Rigell". Daily Press. 
  17. ^ Bresnahan, John (5 December 2013). "GOP men tutored in running against women". Politico. Retrieved 12 July 2014. 
  18. ^ "Where I Stand: Family Values". Scott Rigell for Congress. Retrieved November 22, 2011. 
  19. ^ "Scott Rigell Firmly Disagrees with Glenn Nye's Vote to Repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell". Scott Rigell for Congress. Retrieved November 22, 2011. 
  20. ^ "Scott Rigell On The Issues". On The Issues. Retrieved November 19, 2013. 
  21. ^ Schlanger, Danielle (5 June 2013). "Rep. Scott Rigell Refuses To Endorse E.W. Jackson, Citing Bishop's Views On Gays". Huffington Post. Retrieved 12 July 2014. 
  22. ^ "S. 894". Civic Impulse, LLC. Retrieved November 22, 2011. 
  23. ^ "H Res 292". National Key Votes. Retrieved November 22, 2011. 
  24. ^ Nichols, John (3 July 2014). "Left-Right Coalition of 80 House Members Wants Congress to Check and Balance Iraq Intervention". The Nation. Retrieved 12 July 2014. 
  25. ^
  26. ^ "Bill Text - 113th Congress (2013-2014) - THOMAS (Library of Congress)". 
  27. ^ Hooper, Molly (October 4, 2011). "House GOP Freshman Slams Reid, Senate for Inaction on Budget". The Hill. The Hill. Retrieved 2013-02-04. 
  28. ^ "Lawmaker calls Buffett's bluff". Fox News. April 5, 2012. 
  29. ^ "Congressional Bills and Votes". The New York Times. 
  30. ^ "2010 June Republican Primary Unofficial Results". Virginia State Board of Elections. 
  31. ^ November 2010 Unofficial Results Virginia State Board of Elections

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Glenn Nye
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 2nd congressional district

January 3, 2011 – present
Succeeded by
United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Cedric Richmond
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Martha Roby