Debate

Carolyn Long (left) and Jaime Herrera Beutler. 

U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Battle Ground, has a roughly 14-point lead over her next-highest challenger in the first count of August primary election votes, coming out on top in a five-way race to retain her seat in Congress for another two years.

With all eight counties in the Third Congressional District reporting preliminary results as of 9:45 p.m. Aug. 4, Herrera Beutler had about 54.7 percent of total votes in Washington’s Third Congressional District. Challenger Democrat Carolyn Long came in second with about 41.2 percent of district voters in her primary rematch with Herrera Beutler, which was farther away from her first August race against the incumbent back in 2018.

That year, Herrera Beutler was not able to get a majority in the primary, though she did top out that race and ultimately won out against Long in the November general election. In 2018, Herrera Beutler had about 42.1 percent of the vote against Long’s roughly 35.3 percent, with a number of alternative candidates including challengers from both parties taking the remainder of votes that year.

Long proved to be Herrera Beutler’s most-competitive challenger for re-election yet that November, though the incumbent managed to win with about 52.7 percent of the vote over Long.

For this August the primary for Herrera Beutler’s seat had fewer in the running with five candidates compared to 2018’s seven. Candidates looking like they will be eliminated this election include returning challenger Martin Hash, no party preference, who came in third with about 1.6 percent of the vote, and Democrats Davy Ray and Devin Gray nabbing about 1.4 percent and roughly .9 percent of the vote, respectively.

Following Tuesday night’s results, Herrera Beutler took to Facebook to express thanks to voters for her showing, saying she was “humbled by your overwhelming support” leading to advancement to another general election. She said there was “much more work to do” in a number of policy issues such as small business protections and health care reform.

“I grew up here, I understand this region inside and out, and I have a record of getting results,” Herrera Beutler wrote.

Herrera Beutler received congratulations from National Republican Congressional Committee Chair Tom Emmer, expressing confidence she would come out victorious in November with voters rejecting Long’s “socialist leanings.”

“Carolyn Long is a radical, perennial candidate,” Emmer wrote, adding that the challenger would “raise taxes and strip Washington families of their employer-provided health insurance in favor of a government-run plan.”

Long also addressed supporters via social media following the results, saying she was “thrilled to be moving to November.”

“We couldn’t have done it without our robust, grassroots support,” she wrote.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) had their own remarks on Long advancing, stating the primary results “have made it crystal clear that Jaime Herrera Beutler is in trouble” in a statement.

“The unprecedented grassroots energy in Washington's Third Congressional District, combined with Carolyn's grassroots campaign offer a sharp contrast with a GOP Member of Congress who has lost touch with the voters and listens more to her special interest backers,” DCCC Chair Cheri Bustos wrote alongside the committee statement. “This is a top Democratic pickup

opportunity in November."

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(1) comment

Lew Waters

Comments by DCCC Chair Cheri Bustos shows this race has been focused on partisanship and a power grab by Carolyn Long and the Democrats over any actual concern for the citizens in the district.

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