Arrow-right Camera
News >  Local government

Stephanie Cates stepping down as chairwoman of Spokane County GOP

UPDATED: Thu., April 19, 2018, 1:50 p.m.

FILE - Stephanie Cates has served as chair of the Spokane County GOP since December 2016. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
FILE - Stephanie Cates has served as chair of the Spokane County GOP since December 2016. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

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.

Subscribe to the Morning Review newsletter

Get the day's top headlines delivered to your inbox every morning by subscribing to our newsletter

There was a problem subscribing you to the newsletter. Double check your email and try again, or email

You have been successfully subscribed!

Top stories in Local government

Riverfront Park rides shot down by Spokane Park Board once again

A lobbying effort by former Riverfront Park Director Hal McGlathery and citizens pushing for the return of low-cost rides in the new park failed to attract a majority of the Spokane Park Board on Thursday, who nixed the idea after a feasibility study showed it could cost the city up to $750,000 over the next 20 years and said it wasn’t compatible with the downtown park’s future.