A surge in votes tallied Friday for Republican Joe Kent drastically eroded Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler’s chances to reach the general election for Washington’s 3rd Congressional District.
As of Friday evening, Herrera Beutler’s lead was down to 257 votes — an 86.78 percent drop from Thursday, which was down 50.50 percent from Wednesday. If the trend continues, Kent seems likely pull ahead early next week in the race for the second position on the November general election ballot.
Herrera Beutler had 41,602 votes as of Friday, or 22.62 percent of the total. Kent had 41,346 votes, or 22.48 percent out of 183,945 votes tallied to date.
Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez has secured her spot in the general election. She leads all primary candidates with 31.18 percent of the vote and is the most popular candidate in Clark, Pacific and Skamania counties.
Herrera Beutler gained the lead by 56 votes in Cowlitz County, which was previously held by Perez. The Battle Ground Republican remains the top vote-getter in Wahkiakum County.
Kent is the top vote-getter in Lewis and Thurston counties.
With about 30,000 votes left to tally in Clark County, County Auditor Greg Kimsey said all ballots should be counted by Tuesday. Clark County, the most populated county in the district, has a 34.56 percent voter turnout as of Friday evening.
Clark County’s next update is set for 5 p.m. Monday. Lewis County’s next ballot count is set for Aug. 15 and Skamania County’s is set for Aug. 16, when the election results will be certified.
There were little to no changes in other races.