Newhouse campaign backed by unions, political action committees
Last updated 7/30/2020 at 4:48pm
SUNNYSIDE - If campaign finance paints a true picture of the outcome of an election, the Congressional District No. 4 incumbent will win the Aug. 4 primary in a landslide.
A check of the Federal Election Commission reports shows Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Sunnyside, with total receipts of $782,280.27. As of the July 15 report, he had $226,710.76 cash on hand.
His cash on hand is more than all of combined contributions the remaining candidates have received.
According to June 30 federal reports, Richland Democrat Douglas E. McKinley Jr. has total receipts of $35,153.95, including a remaining cash on hand of $20,974.07.
A distant third in fundraising, Sarena Sloot, a Kennewick Republican, has received a total of $3,576.11 in her bid to unseat Newhouse. She had $1,025.15 cash remaining in her campaign warchest, as of July 15.
The reports on independent challenger Evan Owen Jones of Richland and Republican Tracy Justice Wright of Grand Coulee show a zero balance for collections, expenditures and cash on hand.
So where did the cash funding Newhouse's campaign come from?
Unions, policital action committees
Reports show $5,000 contributions each coming from multiple political action committees and unions, including the National Electrical Contractors Association, Engineers Political Education Committee/International Union of Operating Engineers, Carpenters Legislative Improvement Committee United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, United Fresh Produce Association, American Crystal Sugar Co., UA Union Plumbers and Pipefitters Vote!, National Electrical Contractors Association, and more.
The largest donor to is campaign from Washington state is Lawrence Hughes of Yakima, who made two contributions of $2,800, for a total of $5,600. Mary Ellen Hughes, a Medina homemaker, also donated $2,800, reports show. Other large donors to his campaign from Washington state include the Puyallup Tribe of Puyallup, Suquamish Indian Tribe of Suquamish, Todd Cameron of Pasco, Nancy J. Long of Naches, Lawrence Hughes of Medina, Thomas J. Sauve of Yakima, Muckleshoot Indian Tribe of Auburn and Bruce R. McCaw of Bellevue, all donating $2,800.
Incumbent Franklin County Commissioner Brad Peck of Pasco also donated $2,800, as did his wife, Debra Peck of Pasco, for a total of $5,600, reports show, with many more contributors on the list.
Local contributors only
McKinley has far less donors, and no union support from outside the area.
McKinley's biggest donor is Michael Christianson, who made two contributions for $2,800 each, for a total of $5,600. Christianson is president of The Park Co. of Pasco, reports show.
The Benton County Democratic Central Committee of Richland also kicked in $5,000.
Other top donors to his campaign include Richard Reuther of Pasco, Steve Lee of Kennewick and Cynthia Koski of Richland, each donating $1,000, reports show.
Sloot only has a handful of contributors to her campaign. And like McKinley, they are all local.
Gail Hoobler of Richland, a Bechtel employee, has made two contributions of $500 each and is Sloot's biggest financial supporter, reports show.
Other contributors include Stephen Leckenby of Kennewick, $600; Aaron Johnson of Kennewick, $500; and Tammy Fine of Kennewick, $500, reports show.