Aug 3, 2022 - News

Newhouse leads in bid to advance to Washington's general election

Republican incumbent U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse speaks in front of the U.S. Capitol.
Republican incumbent U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse. Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse held a lead in his bid to advance to the November ballot for Washington state's 4th Congressional District after Tuesday's top-two primary ballot counts.

State of play: Newhouse and Doug White — the lone Democrat in the race — clung to the top two spots over candidate Loren Culp, who had the backing of former President Trump.

  • The three candidates collectively split three quarters of the vote Tuesday evening, as of 9pm, to distance themselves from a crowded primary in a contest that serves as a test of the former president's influence in central Washington.

By the numbers: Newhouse captured 27.2% of the vote Tuesday, with White grabbing nearly 26%; Culp was third with nearly 22%.

  • Culp, the former Republic police chief and 2020 GOP candidate for Washington governor, was Trump's pick for the race.
  • Jerrod Sessler, a former NASCAR driver from Prosser who won endorsements from Trump confidants, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn and Roger Stone, ran a distant fourth Tuesday with less than 11% of the vote.

Why it matters: Newhouse and White's leads in the early counts signal that Trump's influence may be waning among voters in what's one of Washington's most reliably conservative Congressional districts.

Zoom out: A late infusion of PAC money from unknown donors on ads targeting Culp may have benefited Newhouse and White in the final weeks of the campaign.

Background: Newhouse, a four-term incumbent and Sunnyside farmer, was among 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump after the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

  • He faced six Republican challengers and White, a Democrat, in his reelection bid.

Context: Newhouse, who first won the seat in 2014, had garnered at least 57% of the vote in his past three primaries before coasting to reelection in November.

What's next: Votes will be counted in Washington's mail-in primary in the coming hours and days, with the top two vote-getters advancing to November's election.

Editor's note: This story is breaking. Check back for more details.

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