Rossi and Schrier lead 8th Congressional District race

Republican Dino Rossi and Democrat Kim Schrier are the top two finishers in the Aug. 7 primary race for U.S. Representative in Washington’s 8th Congressional District.

Early results show Rossi leading the 12-candidate field with 39.2 percent of the vote, followed by Schrier with 21.3 percent.

This was by far the most closely watched and high stakes national-level race in the region. The district spans multiple counties from Issaquah, Covington, Maple Valley, Auburn and Enumclaw in King County west of the Cascade Mountains to Ellensburg and Wenatchee on the other side of the range.

Last September, Congressman Dave Reichert announced that he wouldn’t seek re-election in the district, quickly making the open seat a priority race for Democrats seeking to take control of the U.S. House of Representatives. The Cook Political Report has deemed it one of the nation’s “toss up” seats.

In response, Republicans fielded Rossi, a former Washington state senator who failed in two bids for governor and one for U.S. Sen. Patty Murray’s seat. And since Reichert won all of his re-election bids since he first ran in 2004, it was practically assured that the district’s conservative voter base would propel Rossi through the the November general election.

On the other side of the aisle, three Democrats jumped into the ring: Schrier, a pediatrician based in Issaquah; Shannon Hader, a former public health official at the Centers for Disease Control; and Jason Rittereiser, a Seattle lawyer originally from Ellensburg.

And money has poured in from donors and political action committees. While mainly waiting to see who his Democratic challenger will be, Rossi has distanced himself somewhat from the Trump administration by diverging with him on trade tariffs.

Other top finishers in Tuesday’s primary are Rittereiser with 18.2 percent and Hader with 14 percent.

Given that their policy platforms were largely uniform, the Democratic candidates distinguished themselves with minor degrees of separation, their backgrounds, and who was best positioned to beat Rossi in November. All three candidates ripped Rossi for his stances on abortion (he argues that abortion is only justified in cases of rape, incest, or when the life of the mother is threatened), while Schrier and Hader argued that more female doctors are needed in Congress.

Rittereiser played up his rural roots in Ellensburg by putting out an ad featuring him on a tractor while also maintaining progressive policy positions like endorsing a House bill that would enact universal Medicare.

In one of the race’s key confrontational moments, Schier took flak from her opponents for indicating at a candidate forum that she didn’t support mandating vaccinations for children. She claimed that she didn’t understand the question and supports vaccinations.

More in News

Madison Miller / staff photo
                                Valley Center Stage and Si View Metro Parks are partnering to debut a new musical, “The Gingerbread Man.” From left: Natalie Collins, Rebecca Zatloukal and Meha Shah.
VCS debuts new musical, “The Gingerbread Man”

VCS and Si View Parks partner for new summer musical.

Missing 46-year-old man found dead at Snow Lake trail

Hiker likely fell from cliff, authorities say .

North Bend citizens run to fill open city council position

Mary Miller, Kristin Tetuan and Darren Glazier will be on the Primary ballots for Position 7.

Three candidates compete for a seat in the Snoqualmie City Council

Katherine Ross, Elaine Armstrong and Anna Sotelo campaign for Council Position No. 2

Mayor of North Bend comes down to two candidates

Rob McFarland and Travis Bridgman explain why they want to be mayor.

Hospital candidates highlight Valley needs

Tim Noonan, Dariel Norris and Gene Pollard will be on Primary Election ballots.

Photo courtesy of Visit North Bend
                                The North Bend Downtown Block Party is returning once again for its 10th annual celebration on Saturday, July 20.
Downtown Block Party returns July 20

The annual festival brings together the Snoqualmie Valley for the 11th year.

King County Correctional Facility is located at 500 5th Ave., Seattle. File photo
King County jail’s leaky pipes have national implications

Lawsuit filed in King County Superior Court alleges Aquatherm has been selling faulty pipes.

Most Read