Fresh off his election night win, Congressman-elect Denver Riggleman is getting down to business in the 5th District.
The Republican wants to turn campaign promises into realities, all while trying to bridge a divide with those who didn't vote for him.
Riggleman campaigned for five months to get to this point, but there’s no resting now.
On Thursday, November 8, he's attending freshman orientation for House of Representatives members.
Right now, he's in the process of hiring his new staff and solidifying policy. He says, once in office, health care, transparency, and tax cuts will be his top priorities.
The first-time congressman says he won on Tuesday, November 6, because he's a match for the 5th District, which stretches from Warrenton to Danville.
Riggleman said election night, which he celebrated at Blue Mountain Brewery in Afton, brought a number of emotions.
“This is fantastic,” Riggleman said. “We won. Lot of relief, but also a little bit of terror because here we go, right? Now we're going to do it."
He says a polarized political climate will be a challenge, but he hopes people in his district will at least listen to what he has to say.
"I think the great thing about it, though, just what if, what if they listened to what I had to say, what if they listen to some of the points I was trying to make and even if they disagree, what if we could come to some sort of solution based on the sort of right, left limits of the Constitution," Riggleman said. "I think that's possible."
He also recognized Republicans will have to start compromising in the House, which is now held by a Democratic majority.
But just because he's headed to Washington doesn't mean you won't see Riggleman in the area anymore.
He plans to be at his Silverback Distillery location in Afton on weekends to serve up some spirits and discuss politics with customers. He says he also plans to hold town halls and brainstorm other ways to engage constituents, with his key goal to be both accessible and ready to listen.
The 116th Congress begins January 3, and Riggleman says he'll be ready for his new job responsibilities.
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