Republican Tom Graves, a real estate investor and former Georgia state legislator whose campaign had tea party backing, was sworn in Monday as the House’s newest Member.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) administered the oath of office to Graves, who handily bested state Sen. Lee Hawkins (R) in a June 8 special runoff in Georgia’s 9th district. Graves will finish the term of former Rep. Nathan Deal (R), who resigned this year to run for governor. The term ends in January.
Graves’ tenure could be short-lived. He is almost certain to face a crowded primary field on July 20 in the solidly Republican district. Roughly a half-dozen Republicans have qualified for the primary ballot.
Graves boosts the number of House Republicans to 178, cutting Democrats’ margin of rule to 77 seats.