Deep-blue Washington State contains a U.S. House district that is being targeted for Republican pickup.
The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) has announced that it is targeting Washington’s 8th Congressional District, which is currently represented by Democrat incumbent U.S. Representative Kim Schrier.
Redistricting did nothing to change the partisan makeup of WA-8, which remains the same. Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight gives the district an “EVEN” partisan rating. The Cook Political Report gives the race a Tossup rating.
Kim Schrier has represented WA-8 since 2019. She defeated the Republican nominee, former State Senator Dino Rossi, by six percentage points in the 2018. The race had no incumbent, as former Republican U.S. Representative David Reichert retired that year. In her 2020 reelect, Schrier beat Republican Jesse Jensen with 52 percent of the vote. Jensen is running again in 2022.
Prior to the 2018 midterm election, Washington’s 8th was in GOP hands continuously starting in 1983.
Schrier was a pediatrician prior to attaining elected office. FiveThirtyEight‘s vote tracking system shows that she is a Biden administration rubber-stamp. Schrier has voted 100 percent in line with the Biden agenda.
The main Republican challengers aiming to take on Schrier in November are Jesse Jensen, Matt Larkin, and Reagan Dunn. The primary is scheduled to take place on August 2.
Jesse Jensen has raised $628,827.90 and has $368,722.31 on hand. Matt Larkin has raised $523,488.54 and has $328,978.53 cash on hand in the bank. Reagan Dunn has raised $344,777.10 and has $321,835.43 on hand.
2020 GOP nominee and former Army Ranger Jesse Jensen’s website says, “Jensen’s decision to run for Congress rose from his commitment to lead a life of continued service inspired by the deaths of two close friends in Afghanistan. While mulling a 2022 campaign, he met with a SWAT officer friend who had been verbally assaulted while lying injured on the side of the road when he crashed his vehicle responding to a call to help an endangered 2-year-old.”
Attorney and businessman Matt Larkin’s website says, “I am running for Congress because as a lifelong Washingtonian, and father of four small children, I believe my family and yours deserve a better and safer Washington. For too long, Washington has been heading in the wrong direction. Crime continues to rise. Drug abuse is out of control. And the homeless situation in our state has hit a breaking point. Yet, no one is doing anything about it.”
King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn’s website says, “Dunn is a compassionate conservative who leads the Republican opposition against failed policies spreading from Seattle to our suburban neighborhoods. Reagan has spent his career fighting to make our communities safer. As a former federal prosecutor and presidential appointee in the U.S. Department of Justice, he is leading the fight to “re-fund the police” and provide desperately needed support for our criminal justice system at a time when murders and shootings have reached record levels in Washington state.”
Jensen and Dunn are listed on the NRCC website as participating in the Young Guns candidate program and have attained the level of On the Radar. The program helps the NRCC track the progress of candidates and assess where to allocate their resources in the November election.
Money is going to be a challenge for the eventual GOP nominee. FEC records show that Schrier has a massive $4,021,807.69 war chest available for her reelection, as of the December 31, 2021 deadline. Outside resources, included those provided by the NRCC and other right-of-center groups, are likely going be an important factor affecting the GOP’s chances of winning this seat.
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Aaron Gulbransen is a reporter at The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected] Follow Aaron on GETTR.
Photo “Kim Schrier” by U.S. House Office of Photography. Background Photo “House Chamber” by U.S. House of Representatives.