If you’ve opened up your voters’ pamphlet, you’ve probably noticed the race for U.S. Senate spans a dozen pages. Twenty-eight candidates have filed to challenge incumbent Maria Cantwell, who’s seeking a fourth term.
Five of the candidates, including Cantwell, are Democrats; five candidates identify as Independents and six list other parties. Thirteen Republicans filed in the race, including former Washington State Republican Party Chairman Susan Hutchison.
An early supporter of then candidate Donald Trump in 2016, Hutchison stepped down as state party chairman earlier this year. She didn't announce her candidacy for Senate until right before the filing deadline in May, calling Seattle City Council's vote on the now repealed business head tax the tipping point.
“The foundations of this city are crumbling,” Hutchison said during a clip from her video voter guide online.
Her website, meanwhile, sticks to federal issues; she lists term limits as one of her 18 priorities.
Patriot Prayer leader Joey Gibson was the first declared Republican candidate in race. A conservative political activist, Gibson is known for leading pro-Trump marches in Democratic leaning cities around the West Coast, often attracting counter demonstrations.
On the opposite side of the political spectrum, Democrat Clint Tannehill, an entrepreneur, says Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign fueled his desire to enter politics. He lists single-payer healthcare and tuition free college as priorities on his candidate statement.
Tannehill appears to be the youngest candidate in the race at 33, but he’s not the only "Berniecrat" type candidate in the race. Jennifer Gigi Ferguson, a past Sanders delegate, received the official Washington State Berniecrat endorsement.
Senator Cantwell tops the fundraising list with more than $9 million raised and more than $5 million cash on hand. Susan Hutchison takes the second spot with more than $400,000 raised.
Only two candidates will advance to the general election, but for now, the race has it all, from first time candidates to perennial Washington candidates such as GoodSpaceGuy.
While the number of candidates filed for the Senate race this year does not set a new state record, it comes close.
Thirty-three candidates filed for the 1983 special election to fill the seat left vacant by the late Washington Senator Henry “Scoop Jackson,” according to the Secretary of State’s Office.