SEATTLE — Democratic U.S. Rep Kim Schrier has won a third term in Washington’s 8th U.S. House district, fending off a challenge from Republicans who targeted the seat as part of their efforts to flip the chamber.
Schrier, a pediatrician, is the only Democrat to have held the seat since the district was created in the early 1980s. She defeated Matt Larkin, a lawyer, abortion rights opponent and former Washington attorney general candidate who painted her as too far left.
Larkin has not conceded.
"With so any ballots remaining to be reported in King County, it is important we wait to make a final call on this race until a substantial portion of those votes are cast," Larkin Campaign spokesperson Mary Ann Pruitt said.
Washington’s 8th Congressional District stretches across the Cascade Mountains, encompassing wealthy Seattle exurbs populated by tech workers and central Washington farmland. It’s one of two competitive seats in the state, along with southwest Washington’s 3rd District, that will help determine which party controls Congress come January.
During her campaign, Schrier highlighted her pragmatic service since being elected in 2018, pointing to helping farmers access research grants, urging Biden to boost pay for wildland firefighters, and securing money to upgrade infrastructure.
In an interview with KING 5, Schrier said she chose to run again so she can continue her work to make healthcare more affordable while addressing inflation and high gas prices.
She also said she wants to continue to fight against abortion bans, calling a proposed nationwide abortion ban "horrifying." Such an important medical decision, she said, should be made by a woman and her doctor.
Larkin criticized Schrier as a rubber-stamp for Biden's policies, blaming her and others for high inflation and gas prices. Larkin, a Christian conservative who opposes abortion, previously stressed talking points that echo some of former President Donald Trump's, with a campaign slogan of: "Make crime illegal again."
Previously, Larkin said there is a prevailing sense that crime is legal. Crime is out of control in King County, he said. He said the current party in power is to blame as they turn "a blind eye" to crime.
He said police officers need more support, including more federal funding.