Aug 10, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Impeachment GOP Rep. Herrera Beutler concedes to Trump-backed rival

Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images

Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-Wash.), one of the 10 House Republicans who voted for former President Trump’s impeachment, conceded in her primary election on Tuesday, one week after ballots were cast.

Why it matters: The upset result is a major victory for Trump, who targeted Herrera Beutler as part of his effort to purge perceived disloyalty within the GOP, particularly by going after Republicans who voted for impeachment.

  • He has also used his endorsement as a proxy for his lasting grip on the party.

Driving the news: Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez, an auto repair shop owner, and Republican Joe Kent, a former Green Beret, will advance to the general election.

The backdrop: In addition to voting for impeachment, Herrera Beutler played a role in the Senate trial the following month.

  • The upper chamber took an 11-hour vote to call witnesses after she revealed new details about a Jan. 6 call between Trump and House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy that she said made her “so angry."

That was more than enough for Trump to endorse Kent, who has echoed his claims that the 2020 election was rigged, vowed to “adjudicate” the result and said he won’t back McCarthy for speaker.

What she's saying: "Ever since I was first elected to this seat, I have done my very best to serve my home region and our country. Though my campaign came up short this time, I'm proud of all we've accomplished together for the place where I was raised and still call home," Herrera Beutler said in a statement.

  • "I'm proud that I always told the truth, stuck to my principles and did what I knew to be best for our country," she added.
  • Herrera Beutler did not say whether she would support Kent in the general election.

What’s next: The general election could be competitive: the 3rd District, which covers much of southwest Washington, voted for Trump by just 4 points in 2020.

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