Herrera Beutler, Gluesenkamp Perez lead in early results Tuesday

Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez led Tuesday night with incumbent Republican Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler in second place ahead of two Republican challengers.

VANCOUVER, Wash. — Unofficial early results Tuesday night showed Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez and incumbent Republican Jaime Herrera Beutler in the lead in the race for Washington’s 3rd congressional district.

As of 10 p.m. Tuesday, Gluesenkamp Perez led with 31.77%, with Herrera Beutler in second place with 24.48%. If those rankings hold, the two will advance to voting in the general election and face off in November.

The other two prominent candidates in the running are Republicans Joe Kent and Heidi St. John, both running to Herrera Beutler’s right. Kent was third on Tuesday night with 20.11% and St John fourth with 15.08%.

Herrera Beutler has represented the Southwest Washington District since 2010, but she faced a tougher primary campaign this year, with Kent and St. John both attacking her as insufficiently conservative.

Kent, who was backed by former President Donald Trump, said he was motivated to join the race because he disagreed with Herrera Beutler’s decision to impeach Trump following the riots in the US Capitol on Jan. 6 last year agree.

RELATED: Results of top Southwest Washington races | Area code 2022

As of Tuesday night, no major media outlets had announced the race, but Perez seemed confident she would rise to general while celebrating with her supporters at a rally.

“What a relief to see voters showing up — they’re not falling for these big money lies that are coming through,” Perez said. “They are standing up for electoral integrity, they are standing up for women’s rights and they are standing up for small business owners who, like me, are in the trades.”

Speaking to reporters Tuesday night, Herrera Beutler said she was “cautiously optimistic” about the initial feeling and has continued to feel that way after seeing the early results.

“Obviously we’re not done, we’ve reviewed the tape, but what’s emerging right now, what I seem to be seeing is that people are very keen on making sure everyone representing Southwest Washington is here on Southwest -Washington, and that’s been nice of my mainstay in that district,” she said. “So I’m really looking forward to looking at the first two now, hoping it stays that way and I can keep going through November.”

RELATED: Leading candidates for Washington’s 3rd Circuit make their case in front of voters ahead of the August 2 primary

Clark County CPA Greg Kimsey told KGW earlier in the day that he expects a turnout of over 40%, a large turnout he attributes to the attention surrounding the race for the 3rd congressional district.

“It’s fantastic to see people getting involved in the process,” he said. “We appreciate that people are voting, we’re thrilled that people are participating.”

Kimsey said county officials expected about 65% of the vote to be tallied by Tuesday night, but added that if the race is very close, the results may not be clear until Friday.

Voters also noticed the high energy surrounding Tuesday’s primary.

“You don’t normally see that many people voting in the primary,” voter Ali Smith of southwest Washington said Tuesday after casting her ballot. “There was a huge party across the street at the polling station. It’s like that all day. I’m not sure what it is, I hope there are just more people who are passionate about democracy.”

https://www.king5.com/article/news/politics/elections/gluesenkamp-perez-herrera-beutler-lead-in-early-results/283-a9d0993b-318c-49a6-8fb8-fe517df73c1c Herrera Beutler, Gluesenkamp Perez lead in early results Tuesday

Alley Einstein

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