DeBolt opts not to run in 3rd District

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House Republican leader Rep. Richard DeBolt of Chehalis said Monday he has decided not to run for the 3rd Congressional District vacancy this year.

“Since the announcement of Rep. Brian Baird’s retirement, I have been encouraged by the words of support and the thoughtful perspectives many of you have shared on the merits of running for Congress,” DeBolt said in a statement. “While there is a strong appeal to bring solutions to the failures of Washington, D.C., I will not be a candidate for Congress this year.”

DeBolt said he will instead devote himself to addressing “unfinished business” in Olympia, including making government more accountable and creating prosperity for Washington families.

“This, coupled with the considerations of my family and the need to keep my focus closer to home, simply made it the wrong time for me to consider a bid for Congress,” he said.

DeBolt has endorsed Republican David Castillo of Olympia, who launched his campaign months before Baird announced in early December that he would not seek a seventh term.

Besides Castillo, Republicans who have announced their intent to run for the 3rd District seat include state Rep. Jaime Herrera of Camas and Washougal city councilman Jon Russell.