Meet Dan

Delegate Dan Helmer is the son of an immigrant and the grandson of Holocaust survivors. Growing up, he ended Passover Seder the same way every year: with the singing of God Bless America. Why? Because for Dan’s family, America has always been the Promised Land. And that is why Dan has always stood up to defend our democracy when it has been under attack.

It’s why after 9/11 and graduating from West Point, he served in Afghanistan.

It’s why when Donald Trump was elected president and attacked our democracy from the highest office in the land, Dan quit his job to run for office. 

It’s why Dan said on TV in 2018 that after 9/11 the greatest threat to our democracy was Donald Trump.

Dan defeated the only Republican incumbent who survived the 2017 blue wave in Northern Virginia and did it without compromising on our values or taking a dime of corporate money. That opponent had voted time and again to criminalize abortion and stopped every single gun violence prevention measure from passing in Richmond.

And when Dan got to Richmond as a freshman legislator, he got right to work, championing gun violence prevention laws like universal background checks, red flag laws, and making sure domestic abusers couldn’t have access to guns. He also led on bills ensuring the victims of sexual assault on college campuses are protected. That leadership is why the Washington Post said Dan “displayed guts, independence, and intelligence as a freshman lawmaker.”

But the attacks on our democracy haven’t stopped. We could have never imagined in our lifetime that we would witness a president of the United States leading insurrectionists and white supremacists in an attack on our Capitol. Or that an extreme Supreme Court would take away a 50-year right to safe and legal abortion, which is something that’s deeply personal to Dan and his wife, Karen, because after their second son was born, Karen’s cardiologist told her to never get pregnant again or she could die.

So Dan was devastated in 2021, when despite the fact that he won reelection in a swing district, we lost our majority in Richmond, putting those rights at risk, and Dan knew we had to do something different.

So, he took on a leadership role in our caucus, serving as our campaigns chair, and led the first successful effort in 60 years to flip a chamber of the General Assembly while the other party’s governor held the Executive Mansion.

And that majority is why we’re going to be able to pass a constitutional amendment to protect abortion rights in Virginia, and why we passed Dan’s bill, House Bill 2, the Assault Weapons Ban. And that’s the kind of effective fighter Dan will be in Washington, and we need members of Congress who are going to stand up for our democracy, so that the country that welcomed his family as refugees and survivors is still here for our grandchildren.