Trump-backed challenger beats US House Republican Bob Good in Virginia primary

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Representative Bob Good (R-VA), chair of the Freedom Caucus, speaks to reporters before attending a meeting in the offices of U.S. Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-LA) in Washington

By Moira Warburton

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican U.S. Representative Bob Good, the leader of a hardline House group, lost a Virginia primary for his seat to state Senator John McGuire, who was endorsed by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Good, chair of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, immediately demanded a recount.

McGuire, a former Navy SEAL, won 50.3% of the vote against Good's 49.7%, the state election agency said, two weeks after the June 18 primary. State law allows for a recount in a race with such a close margin of victory.

"We will pursue the recount to settle any questions about the fairness or transparency of the election process," Diana Shores, Good's campaign manager, said in a statement.

The ultimate winner of the recount is expected to easily carry the strongly Republican-leaning southern Virginia district in the Nov. 5 election, when control of the White House and both chambers of Congress will be up for grabs.

Good angered former President Trump by endorsing Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in his Republican presidential primary campaign against Trump, switching his endorsement to Trump only after DeSantis dropped out.

Good also angered moderate Republicans after he voted to remove Speaker Kevin McCarthy from his role in October, launching weeks of chaos and bitter, highly public infighting as Republicans attempted to coalesce around a replacement.

(Reporting by Moira Warburton in Washington; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)