American Samoa delegate loses seat

American Samoa Del. Eni Faleomavaega (D) lost his reelection bid, bringing the territory its first woman delegate.

Faleomavaega had served 14 consecutive terms as American Samoa’s non-voting delegate. The Associated Press called the race Wednesday afternoon for Republican Aumua Amata Radewagen.

Faleomavaega’s health has recently become a concern, AP reported. He spent time in Honolulu to treat what he said were complications from his exposure to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War.

In the nine-candidate race in the remote Pacific islands, Radewagen garnered 42 percent of the votes, to Faleomavaega’s 31 percent, according to AP.

Faleomavaega was a senior member of the House Natural Resources Committee, the main committee overseeing American Samoa’s affairs. He would have been next in line to become its ranking member if Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) stepped down to lead Democrats in the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

Faleomavaega called Radewagen to congratulate her on her win, AP said.