The chairwoman of the Spokane County Republican Party plans to step down this weekend ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.
Stephanie Cates, who has led the local party since December 2016, said her resignation will be effective Sunday and is due to a lack of time to devote to her political duties.
Isaiah Paine, the party’s vice chair, will serve in an interim role until members of the party meet to elect a new leader.
Cates said she was stepping down in order to give the next chairperson time to get up to speed before what appears to be a competitive campaign season for local Republicans.
“Our candidates deserve someone who can give more time to this job,” Cates said.
Former Spokane Democratic Party Chairman Andrew Biviano gave similar reasons for stepping down as head of the party in January. Ed Wood, former president of the Communications Workers of America Local 7818 and Sen. Maria Cantwell’s campaign, was elected Biviano’s replacement.
Cates launched a social media campaign for the local Republican Party, rebranding it as the party of equality for women last August. She sparred with Biviano and members of the Spokane City Council in the weeks after President Donald Trump’s election, defending the policies of the president who earned just shy of 50 percent of the county’s ballots (Democrats took 41 percent).
Party officials will meet later this month to name Cates’ replacement.
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