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About this race

Jay Inslee is seeking his second term at a time when the state’s economy is doing well. But his Republican opponent, Bill Bryant, said it’s time for change, given problems facing some state agencies and the continuing delay in funding education, as the state Supreme Court has demanded.

Inslee said that under his leadership the state has invested billions in public education and made “significant strides” to increase pay for teachers and increase access to kindergarten. “That’s progress,” he said at a recent debate. And the economy has done well while he has been governor. Unemployment is down and thousands of jobs have been created.

But Bryant points to problems facing the state’s mental health system, including security lapses at Western State Hospital. He also said Inslee hasn’t made enough progress to improve school funding.

Bryant said at the debate he would increase funding for education by dedicating any revenue growth to schools, and would scrutinize existing government spending. Inslee countered that such an approach “won’t work” because it would take needed resources from other areas of government, like mental health and housing.

Inslee backs the state initiative to raise the minimum wage to $13.50 by 2020. Bryant opposes it.

Earlier this year, Inslee gave final approval to the casino proposed by the Spokane Tribe, saying it would boost the economy and provide jobs. Bryant argues the casino puts nearby Fairchild Air Force Base, the county’s largest employer, at risk. Inslee disputes that Fairchild would be harmed.

Inslee’s campaign focused earlier on Bryant’s decision to avoid taking a position on Donald Trump. But Bryant eventually announced he would not vote for Trump, and accused Inslee of diverting attention from state issues.

Governor, State of Washington

Candidate Votes Pct
Jay Inslee (D) 1,573,547 54.65%
Bill Bryant (R) 1,305,765 45.35%

* Race percentages are calculated with data from the Secretary of State's Office, which omits write-in votes from its calculations when there are too few to affect the outcome. The Spokane County Auditor's Office may have slightly different percentages than are reflected here because its figures include any write-in votes.

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