By Congresspedia assistant editor Avelino Maestas
Washington’s controversial new primary system was put to the test yesterday, as voters across the state could vote for candidates from any political party. The top two finishers will advance to the general election, and in every congressional district voters chose one Republican and one Democrat. Those results set up a rematch for one of the most closely watched races in the country. Wyoming voters, meanwhile, used traditional primary elections to try to define the November ballot for two Senate races and the state’s only House seat. However, one race was almost too close to call.
In Washington’s 8th congressional district, Rep. Dave Reichert (R) will once again face Darcy Burner on November 4, following their close election battle in 2006. Under the state’s new primary system, the top-two finishers are placed on the general election ballot, regardless of party affiliation. About 93 percent of district 8 voters picked either Reichert or Burner, with three other candidates receiving the remaining votes. Reichert pulled in 45 percent to Burner’s 42, and the slim margin ensures the race will continue to be a battle through November.
Wyoming’s voters had three federal races on the ballot Tuesday: both Sens. Mike Enzi (R) and John Barrasso (R) are up for election, and the seat being vacated by Republican Rep. Barbara Cubin is being contested as well. Enzi will face Democrat Chris Rothfuss come November, while Gary Trauner will take another shot at the House seat he narrowly lost to Cubin in 2006; he faces former state treasurer Cynthia Lummis (R) this year.
Click through the jump for complete primary results.
Barrasso was appointed to his seat after Republican Sen. Craig Thomas died in 2007. Two Democrats were locked in a close race to challenge Barrasso for the remainder of Thomas’ term. Following Tuesday’s primary, Nick Carter was ahead of Keith Goodenough by just 304 votes. The margin is not enough to trigger an automatic recount, and Goodenough said he will not ask for one.
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Here are the victors of Washington’s primaries:
- In the 1st district, Democratic incumbent Rep. Jay Inslee is being challenged by Republican nominee Larry Ishmael, a development economist.
- In the 2nd district, incumbent Rep. Rick Larsen (D) is up against Rick Bart (R), the former sheriff of Snohomish County.
- In the 3rd district, incumbent Rep. Brian Baird (D) faces Michael Delavar (R), an airline pilot.
- In the 4th district, incumbent Rep. Doc Hastings, a Republican, will run against attorney George Fearing (D).
- In the 5th district, incumbent Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, a Republican, will run against Mark Mays, a Democrat psychologist.
- In the 6th district, incumbent Rep. Norm Dicks (D) is being challenged by Doug Cloud (R), who owns a law practice.
- In the 7th district, incumbent Rep. Jim McDermott, a Democrat, is up against Steve Beren (R), who works for a Seattle marketing firm.
- In the 8th district, incumbent Rep. Dave Reichert (R) will face Darcy Burner, a Democrat, who is a former Microsoft product manager.
- In the 9th district, Democratic incumbent Rep. Adam Smith is going up against James Postma (R), a retired engineer.
Here are the victors of Wyoming’s primaries:
- Republican Sen. John Barrasso will face Democrat Nick Carter, a prosecuting attorney.
- Sen. Mike Enzi (R) faces Chris Rothfuss, a Democrat who recently worked in for the State Department.
- In the at-large district, Republican Rep. Barbara Cubin has decided to retire. Seeking her open seat is Cynthia Lummis (R), the former state treasurer, and Democratic nominee Gary Trauner, co-founder on OneWest.net.