UPDATE: Retired Army Col. Chris Perkins of Lorton has won the GOP primary in the 11th congressional district with about 60 percent of the vote. He will now do battle with incumbent Democrat Congressman Gerald Connolly in November.
"I know my words sound almost contrived, but I'm feeling so humble right now," Perkins said as he greeted a house full of well-wishers Tuesday night. "Because all of these people put their faith in me." He thanked his wife Petra for her contributions to the campaign.
Gov. Bob McDonnell weighed in Tuesday night with congratulations:
"Eleventh district Republicans tonight nominated a great candidate in Chris Perkins," he said in a news release sent out at about 10:45 p.m. "Chris understands the importance of keeping taxes low and making government more efficient and effective. I know he will run an energetic and upbeat campaign."
Democrat incumbent Connolly called Perkins to congratulate him on his win. "He's looking forward to having many spirited dialogues on the issues as often as possible," Perkins said.
Ken Vaughn also called. "He ran a solid campaign," Perkins said of his opponent in the primary.
"I'm going to give my staff one day off and then we're going to pull all my signs from the medians," Perkins said. His campaign made a commitment not to put out signs until the week before the primary, then put out 1,600 in one night.
Perkins' apparent star power beat contender Vaughn, 44, a traffic engineer who was motivated to run to help do something about the economy. Vaughn, his wife and twin sons live in Herndon.
Perkins, 55, who touts his experience in the military, received an endorsement from former Congressman Tom Davis.
Perkins is now a self-employed defense consultant. He became a grandfather about two weeks ago with the birth of the family's first grandchild, by his daughter Alex. His son recently graduated from West Point.
The Washington Post called the primary for Perkins Tuesday at 8:38 p.m.
Primary watchers will be keeping an eye tonight on the GOP primary in Virginia's 11th congressional district, where Lorton resident and retired Army officer is up against Herndon traffic engineer .
Vaughn is expected at an election results party at Icons in Fairfax City but only volunteers are there at 8:20 p.m. Tuesday.
The winner of today's primary will run against Congressman Gerald Connolly.
County/City Candidate Vote Vote % Stats Fairfax County
37.50%114 of 116 precincts Prince William County
36.38%35 of 35 precincts Fairfax City
36.33%7 of 7 precincts
Vaughn, 44, lives in Herndon with his wife and twin sons, decided to run for Congress due to his concern about the economy, he told Patch earlier this year. Vaughn is keeping an eye on the results tonight at a party in Fairfax City.
Perkins, 55, who touts his experience in the military, received an endorsement from former Congressman Tom Davis. Perkins is now a self-employed defense consultant.
In Perkins' military career, mainly as a Green Beret (a member of the U.S. Army Special Forces), he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his role in an attempt to rescue a downed aircrew during Operation Desert Storm. After retiring from the Army as a full Colonel in 2006, Perkins was hired by the U.S. Coast Guard to help establish a maritime quick reaction force to help secure the nation's coastline.
A native of Vermont, Perkins lives in Lorton with wife Petra; the two are parents to daughter Alex, a graduate of Virginia Tech, and son Nick, a cadet at West Point.
Republican Keith Fimian, a businessman from Oakton, came , in his second attempt in 2010, but is now reportedly considering a run for lieutenant governor. Fimian lost to Connolly by less than 1,000 votes or .4 percent.