Democratic congressional hopeful Marie Gluesenkamp Perez remained ahead of ultra MAGA Republican rival Joe Kent today as thousands of ballots were tabulated across the five counties in Washington’s 3rd Congressional District.
To win, Gluesenkamp Perez must hold out against Kent in the late ballots, which doomed incumbent Jaime Herrera Beutler back in August.
On Election Night, Gluesenkamp Perez had an 11,123 vote lead.
100,564 votes were tabulated for her and 89,441 were tabulated for Kent.
In today’s count, that lead shrank to 10,273.
114,675 votes have now been tabulated for her and 104,402 for Kent.
Gluesenkamp Perez is winning Clark and Pacific counties, while Kent is winning Lewis, Cowlitz, Thurston, Wahkiakum, and Skamania counties. Clark is the district’s population center, with the largest concentration of voters in the 3rd.
Clark reports having about 70,000 ballots left to be processed.
Cowlitz, the district’s second largest county, reports having about 12,000.
Lewis has 6,000.
Pacific, Wahkiakum, and Skamania have less than a thousand combined.
Thurston has 35,000 ballots awaiting processing, but most of those are from precincts in the county that aren’t inside the 3rd Congressional District.
Gluesenkamp Perez’s lead yesterday in Clark County was 20,593 votes; that lead increased today to 22,106 votes even as the overall lead shrank.
That is a very encouraging sign, because most of the outstanding ballots are from Clark. Herrera Beutler was only able to increase her advantage in Clark County by a measly seventeen votes over Kent on the second day of Top Two counting.
That left Herrera Beutler very, very vulnerable.
If Gluesenkamp Perez does well in Clark County in the next three counts, she stands a better chance of withstanding a surge of ultra MAGA votes from Lewis and other small but fierce right wing bastions within the district.
Cowlitz County had not filed its November 9th report at the time other mass media reported on the day two count in the 3rd Congressional District, but it now has.
In that county, which is home to communities like Kelso and Longview, Kent has an advantage, but it’s not enormous. Kent’s Election Night lead in Cowlitz was 909 votes. However, Kent more than doubled his Cowlitz lead today to 1,970 votes.
In reliably Republican Lewis County, home to Centralia and Chehalis, Kent’s advantage widened to 8,065 votes, up from 6,948 yesterday.
In Skamania County, Kent’s advantage went from 192 votes to 298 votes.
In Thurston County, Kent’s advantage went from 1,696 votes to 1,775 votes.
Pacific County did not have a ballot drop today; there won’t be one until Monday. Wahkiakum also had no drop today, but one is planned for tomorrow.
Cowlitz and Lewis have only a fraction of the number of outstanding ballots that Clark has, so Kent will run out of runway soon if he doesn’t make gains in Clark. Gluesenkamp Perez’s expansion of her Clark County lead is a big deal. We’ll see if she can repeat that feat tomorrow, or else if not, at least hold steady.