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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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U.S. Representative

Election Results

Candidate Votes Pct
Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R) 177,481 62.05%
Rich Cowan (D) 108,548 37.95%

* 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.

About The Race

Since Speaker of the House Tom Foley lost his seat in 1994, Democrats have struggled in Congressional races for Washington’s fifth district. Although Democrats this year quickly united behind one candidate, primary results suggest Republicans have retained the upper hand. Democratic businessman Rich Cowan won just 33 percent of the vote in August. Incumbent Republican Cathy McMorris-Rodgers, who has generally breezed to reelection since winning the seat in 2004, had 56 percent of the vote. Two lesser-known candidates were eliminated. In recent years, McMorris-Rodgers has gained an expanding role in Congress and the Republican Party and is considered the highest-ranking woman in the House as the vice chairwoman of the House Republican Conference.

Members of the House of Representatives serve two-year terms and are paid $174,000 per year, plus healthcare and other benefits.

The Candidates

Cathy McMorris Rodgers

Party:
Republican
Age:
51
City:
Spokane, WA
Occupation:
U.S. congresswoman

Education: Graduated from the Columbia River Christian Academy, Kettle Falls, in 1986. Earned pre-law bachelor’s degree from Pensacola Christian College in 1990 and executive MBA from the University of Washington in 2002.

Political experience: Appointed to state House of Representatives, serving the 7th Legislative District, in 1993. Elected to state House in 1994, where she served until joining Congress. Elected to Congress in 2004. Former Vice Chair of House Republican Conference. Elected chairwoman of House Republican Conference in 2013. Served as ranking member of the House's Energy and Commerce Committee's Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee beginning in 2019. 

Work experience: Aide to state representative, 1990-93. Worked at her family orchard and fruit stand for 13 years, prior to election to Congress.

Family: Married. Has three young children.

Rich Cowan

Party:
Democrat
Age:
64
City:
Spokane, WA
Occupation:
CEO and founder, North by Northwest

RICH COWAN

Education: Graduated from Juanita High School in Kirkland, Wash. in 1974. Earned broadcast journalism degree from Washington State University in 1979. Earned human nutrition master’s degree from WSU in 1984.

Work experience: Co-founded North by Northwest Productions in 1990. Worked as the community affairs director for KHQ-TV from 1986-1990. Served as a firefighter and emergency medical technician at Washington State University while a college student. Served on Community Colleges of Spokane Vocational Advicsory Council in mid-1990s. Former Eagle Scout.

Political experience: Ran for Congress in 2012 against U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers.

Family: Divorced. Has two adult children.