Herrera Beutler in hassle as Kent wins WA District 3; Newhouse advances to #4

Challenger Joe Kent narrowly edged out U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler in vote counts released Friday, leaving the six-term incumbent teetering on the brink of defeat as Republicans hit back at her vote to impeach former President Donald Trump.

Meanwhile, U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse has so far survived an impeachment vote to run against Democrat Doug White this fall, with Trump-backed challenger Loren Culp finishing third.

Herrera Beutler, R-Battle Ground, was in second place as of election night in the 3rd District race in Southwest Washington.

But Kent, her Trump-backed Republican challenger, has in subsequent calculationscutting deep into Herrera Beutler’s lead and threatening to push her to third.

Kent has become more established every day and shows that he is ahead of Herrera Beutler next week when more votes are counted.

Herrera Beutler “needs a miracle,” Dave Wasserman, editor of the nonpartisan Cook Political Report and election expert, wrote on Twitter, calling Kent “a strong favorite to knock her out of the top two.”

As of Friday night, Herrera Beutler had 22.6% of the vote to Kent’s 22.5%, just 257 votes. Kent was 1,945 behind on Thursday. About 30,000 ballots remain to be counted in the district’s population center, Clark County, which will be counted again on Monday.

Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez remained in first place with about 31% of the vote, leaving her facing a November matchup with either Kent or Herrera Beutler.

If it stays this close, the race will be subject to a mandatory recalculation.

A machine recount is required if the difference between the two candidates is less than 2,000 votes and less than half of 1% of the total votes cast for the candidates. A manual recount is required if the candidates are separated by less than 150 votes and less than a quarter of 1% of the total votes for both candidates.

Despite the flooding, Kent surged in the late polls more than 4 million USD of external PAC spending whose purpose was to save Herrera Beutler. Some of the money fueled ads that boosted another Republican challenger and Kent challenger Heidi St. John, who finished fourth in the race.

In central Washington’s 4th District, Newhouse, R-Sunnyside, managed to win the primary despite voting with Herrera Beutler and eight other Republicans to impeach Trump in the 2021 race. January 6 attacks on the US Capitol building.

Newhouse was in first place with about 25.5% of the vote, narrowly edging out Democrat Doug White (25.4). The Seattle Times announced the race for White and Newhouse.

Kulp, former small town police chief and 2020 candidate for governor, was in third place with 21%, as the Republican vote against Newhouse was split between six challengers.

County assessment boards are due to confirm the results on August 16. Statewide results must be certified by the Secretary of State by August 19.

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