The Benton County Republican Party endorsed Clint Didier on Thursday in the race to represent Washington’s 4th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.
It did not endorse the incumbent, Rep. Dan Newhouse. The Sunnyside Republican is seeking re-election after his first term.
Both men are Republicans and were eligible for endorsement. Under party rules, all candidates who receive 60 percent or more of the votes are endorsed. Didier received more than 60 percent while Newhouse fell just short of the threshold, a party spokesman said.
The Washington State Republican Party is supporting Newhouse’s re-election bid because its bylaws require it to support incumbents. Susan Hutchison, chairman of the state party, personally endorsed Newhouse as well.
The county parties are not under any obligation to follow the state party’s lead.
Newhouse narrowly defeated Didier, a Franklin County farmer, in the 2014 race to succeed Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Pasco. Didier sought a rematch, saying Newhouse’s voting record is not conservative enough.
Newhouse and Didier were the top votegetters in the August primary and are facing off in the Nov. 8 general election.
The Benton County Republican Party Central Committee endorsed several judicial candidates during the Sept. 1 meeting, during which candidates gave three-minute presentations.
- Joe Burrowes, Benton-Franklin Superior Court, Position 2
- Sam Swanberg, Benton-Franklin Superior Court, Position 2
- Alicia Berry, Benton-Franklin Superior Court, Position 3
- Bill Jenkin, State Legislature, Legislative District 16, Position 1
The Franklin County Republican Party has issued no endorsements in the race.