UPDATE: Herrera Beutler rallies volunteers

She also throws support behind GOP candidates running for statewide offices

By Stevie Mathieu, Columbian Assistant Metro Editor



U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, and Republican County Commissioner Marc Boldt laugh during a get-out-the-vote rally Friday at her Hazel Dell campaign headquarters.

U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, speaks Friday at a get-out-the-vote rally at her Hazel Dell campaign headquarters. She was joined by a crowd of about 30 people and three Republican candidates for statewide offices.

U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, encouraged her supporters on Friday morning to continue their get-out-the-vote efforts between now and Tuesday.

“We need in the next four days to really uncover every voter who’s got their ballot sitting on their coffee table,” Herrera Beutler told a group of about 30 people who had gathered in her campaign headquarters in Hazel Dell. “We need to get them to remember to turn in that ballot.”

It’s a message many politicians are trying to hammer home in the final days before the election. On Tuesday, gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna made a campaign stop in Vancouver for the same purpose. Democratic U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell was in Vancouver a week ago, urging her supporters to vote.

On Friday, Herrera Beutler also drummed up enthusiasm for three Republicans running for statewide offices: Bill Finkbeiner, a candidate for lieutenant governor; Reagan Dunn, a candidate for attorney general; and James Watkins, a candidate for state auditor.

All three were present at the rally and asked the audience to keep encouraging people to vote.

“This election could not be more important,” Dunn said. “There are really close races across the board. I think all three of us — James, Bill, myself — are in very, very tight election contests.”

Throughout the election season, candidates have worked hard to convince registered voters that they are the best choice. But many candidates have said that none of that matters unless supporters send in their ballots.

“I have been to call centers all over the state, and they are packed,” Watkins said. “This is the time for us to work, to close hard, and make sure we get every vote possible for the future of Washington state.”

Also spotted in the crowd were state Rep. Paul Harris, R-Vancouver, Republican House candidate Brandon Vick, and Clark County Commissioner Marc Boldt.

Those speaking at Friday’s rally appeared optimistic that voters would choose a Republican president and a Republican Washington governor on Tuesday.

“Hopefully we’ll see a lot of victory come Nov. 6,” Herrera Beutler said.

The Friday event was one of several campaign stops Herrera Beutler is making during the week leading up to Election Day, according to a news release sent out by her campaign office. She was in Chehalis and Longview on Thursday. She also visited Camas on Friday.

Herrera Beutler was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives two years ago. She is running against Democrat Jon Haugen, a commercial airline pilot from Vancouver.

Finkbeiner is running against longtime Democratic Lt. Gov. Brad Owen, Dunn is running against Democrat Bob Ferguson, and Watkins is running against Democrat Troy Kelley. Ballots were mailed to registered voters in Clark County on Oct. 15 and must be postmarked by Nov. 6.

Stevie Mathieu: 360-735-4523; http://facebook.com/reportermathieu; http://twitter.com/col_politics; stevie.mathieu@columbian.com.