Hastings, Newhouse schedule joint announcement

Retiring U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Pasco, and Dan Newhouse, one of two candidates to replace him, have scheduled a joint announcement Wednesday in Richland.

Hastings said he would consider endorsing a candidate when he announced he was leaving Congress earlier this year. He declined to say whether he was supporting Newhouse, a Sunnyside farmer and former state agriculture director, or fellow Republican Clint Didier at a Tri-Cities Regional Chamber of Commerce speech last week, saying it wasn’t the time or place for such an announcement.

Didier, an Eltopia farmer and former pro football player who finished with 31.8 percent, and Newhouse, who had 25.6 percent, had most votes out of a 12-person field in last month’s primary. Their Nov. 4 contest will be the first time two Republicans have faced each other in the general election for Congress in the state since Washington went to a “top two” primary system.

The announcement is scheduled for 10 a.m. at the Richland Community Center, 500 Amon Park Drive.