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Friday, September 29, 2023
Sept. 29, 2023

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Kent concedes 3rd District race to Marie Gluesenkamp Perez

By , Columbian staff writer

Republican Joe Kent on Wednesday officially conceded the race to represent Washington’s 3rd Congressional District after being defeated by Rep.-elect Marie Gluesenkamp Perez, D-Skamania.

“I promised during the campaign that I would accept the outcome of the election, now definitively determined as the recount has concluded,” Kent wrote in a statement. “This morning, I called my opponent to concede and offer my congratulations on her victory.”

He identified a lesson to glean from his loss: increase Republican turnout in future elections.

“We cannot continue to lose the voter turnout battle,” Kent wrote. “Our party must adapt, and I look forward to helping lead this change.”

The acknowledgement came after counties in the 3rd District concluded individual machine recounts, per Kent’s request. These results showed that Perez won the race with 160,323 votes, or 50.14 percent, leading Kent’s 157,690 votes, or 49.31 percent. In the recount, she gained nine votes compared with his additional five.

“I’m glad Joe Kent accepted his loss, and I look forward to serving as Southwest Washington’s independent voice in Congress,” Perez said. “Democracy is alive and well in our corner of the country.”

In his statement, Kent noted that he will have more to say in early January, presumably about his political future.

“Rest assured that I’m not done yet,” he wrote.

The Washington secretary of state’s office is anticipated to recertify the election results this week. Elections cannot be certified more than twice.