Not even a month after the formation of the 118th United States Congress, the Republican challenger to current U.S. Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez in the November election declared his candidacy for the next election cycle.
In a Jan. 12 email to supporters, Joe Kent announced he will run again in the 2024 election. In the email, Kent noted the election came down to less than a percentage point as Democrat Gluesenkamp Perez secured about 50.1% of the vote to Kent’s roughly 49.3%.
“We cannot let that happen again and that’s why I’m getting an early start in this race to make sure my campaign has the financial resources to compete all the way through November 2024,” Kent wrote in the email.
The email focused on fundraising. Kent said he was outspent five-to-one in the general election. Kent said he planned to target more than 80,000 Republicans he said did not vote in the 2022 election.
Kent edged out Republican incumbent Jaime Herrera Beutler during the August primary election, beating her to second place by about a half of a percentage point.
Kent, who was backed by former president Donald Trump, ran among a number of Republican candidates who sought to unseat Herrera Beutler after she voted to impeach the then-president after the storming of the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021.
In the Jan. 12 email, Kent said he is running for Congress again to unseat the “most progressive” member of Congress.
That member, Gluesenkamp Perez, responded to Kent’s announcement, saying Kent is “back with the same bad ideas” in his second attempt.
She refuted allusions to being far on the political spectrum, stating she has hired bipartisan staff. Gluesenkamp Perez said she has worked with Herrera Beutler to return federal forest land to Skamania County.
“I will always put country before party and I will always fight against political extremists like Joe Kent who seek to undermine our democracy,” Gluesenkamp Perez said in her statement.
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