Citizens on both sides of the aisle consider this year’s general election to be one of the most important elections in recent history. With just one week left before election day, things seem to be reaching a boiling point.
The race for Washington’s 3rd Congressional District is one of the most closely watched contests here in Southwest Washington. Republican incumbent Jaime Herrera Beutler is facing off against Democrat Carolyn Long, a rematch of the 2018 election where Beutler narrowly won the district.
By Monday, Oct. 26, Clark County had received nearly 145,000 ballots, accounting for nearly 45% of registered voters in the county. However, many are still undecided on who they want representing Southwest Washington.
According to a Twitter poll conducted by The Indy on Oct. 21, nearly 12% of our followers are undecided between Long and Herrera Beutler. Long led with 46%, with Herrera Beutler close behind.
In an effort to keep our readers informed ahead of this important election, The Indy has summarized the candidate’s positions on key topics and issues that affect students and their families most.
Incumbent Herrera Beutler was raised in Southwest Washington. She graduated from Prairie High School and went onto receiving her Bachelor in Communications from the University of Washington.
Before being elected to Congress in 2010, Herrera Beutler served as a legislative aide for congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers. A legislative aide acts as an assistant to their legislator, performing tasks such as conducting research, supervising volunteers and interns and setting appointments.
Herrera Beutler was also a Washington state representative from 2007 until her election into Congress in 2010.
Although Beutler has voted Republican 92% of the time, she has supported measures that both sides have agreed with. She was one of 20 House representatives to receive the inaugural “Jefferson-Hamilton Award for Bipartisanship” this year in June.
Herrera Beutler voted for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which provides funding for critical programs for victims of domestic abuse.
Herrera Beutler voted against the Equality Act which provides consistent and explicit non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people across key areas of life, including employment, housing, credit, education, public spaces and services, federally funded programs, and jury service.
She also voted no on the American Dream and Promise Act of 2019, also known as DACA or the Dreamers Act, which would provide Dreamers the opportunity to apply for permanent legal status and eventually become eligible for U.S. citizenship.
Jaime Herrera Beutler voted against an amendment to defund the Trump Administration’s unnecessary regulation that creates a “Division of Conscience and Religious Freedom” within the Department of Health and Human Services. The “Division of Conscience and Religious Freedom” regulation is designed to refuse service to LGBTQ people and people needing reproductive care.
Her opposing candidate Carolyn Long ran against her in the 2018 election and lost, but it was one of the closest election races Beutler has ever had.
Long grew up in Brookings, Oregon working at her father’s produce stand part-time while in school. She is a tenured professor at Washington State University Vancouver (WSUV) where she teaches civic education and is an associate professor for WSUV’s school of politics, philosophy and public affairs.
Long was awarded the Iris H-ROC award in 2018, which honors women in Southwest Washington who have promoted civil discourse, teamwork, and collaboration.
If she is elected, Long plans to provide access to broadband for all which is an internet service so even those in the most rural parts of Washington have access to twenty-first-century technology.
Long plans to enact a student loan reform that will redirect money into the economy rather than the student loan ‘overlords’.
She promises that she will pass protections for clean air and water to preserve Southwest Washington’s natural resources.
Long promises to offer a low deductible health care option that protects those with pre-existing conditions.
On Oct. 9, both Herrera Beutler and Long faced each other in a heated debate answering questions from local newspapers and the public. You can watch here for further insight on their stances on particular issues.
Herrera Beutler on why she is the best candidate, “Well, this has been a really challenging year both for this nation and this state. The global pandemic has cost us lives and a booming economy and we need to go back there and I feel I’m the best candidate qualified to get us back on the rebound,” she said.
Long answering the same question, “I’m the daughter of a family who owned a small business. I grew up in a rural community and learned the value of hard work. I’m a mom, and I worked at WSU for the last 25 years and I paid for college working a proud union job as a grocery store worker. I’m somebody who’s responsive to the community that’s illustrated by how much I’m in the community listening and learning from and about you. I’m also someone who believes in the truth and believes I’m running a campaign based on honesty and truth,” she said.