Cantwell cruises to fourth term in US Senate
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) – Democratic U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell on Tuesday easily won re-election to a fourth term from Washington state, beating Republican Susan Hutchison.
Cantwell outdistanced Hutchison, a former Seattle TV anchor and state GOP party chairwoman.
A former tech executive who previously served one term in the U.S. House and six years as a representative in the state Legislature, Cantwell was first elected to the Senate in 2000.
Cantwell told cheering supporters in the Seattle area that she was honored to continue to represent the residents of the state despite a divisive political environment.
“This is one of the most amazing elections,” Cantwell said Tuesday evening, calling it a “mid-course correction.”
“I’m going to redouble my efforts to work across the aisle, to get things done for our country,” Cantwell said.
Cantwell said she traveled from Pullman to Port Angeles during the campaign and met many people who were working to move the state and the nation forward.
“I also met people who are feeling very vulnerable,” Cantwell said, in part because of worries about health care.
She said she would seek economic prosperity for all corners of the state.
“Every generation of Americans have met their challenge,” Cantwell said. “It’s now our turn to write this story about working for economic prosperity for everyone in the state of Washington.”
Cantwell did not win any counties in Eastern Washington, but won numerous counties in more populous Western Washington to romp to victory.
Cantwell has said voters want experienced representation in Congress and this year were paying attention to everything from the trade debate to health care and access to public lands.
She noted she’s fought the Trump administration on efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, but also cited bipartisan bills she’s worked on, including a low-income housing tax credit she co-sponsored with Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah.
Cantwell, 60, vastly outraised her challenger, who had cited military readiness and tougher immigration laws as top campaign issues.
It’s been nearly a quarter century since the GOP has captured a major statewide race in Washington. The last time voters sent a Republican to the U.S. Senate was 1994, when Sen. Slade Gorton was re-elected to his final term before being ousted by Cantwell in 2000. The last Republican governor, John Spellman, was elected in 1980. Republicans hold both the secretary of state and treasurer’s offices.
Hutchison was one of the most high-profile candidates Cantwell has faced. She spent two decades at KIRO-TV before leading the state Republican party for five years.