Congressional decision allows DelBene to take seat Immediately

South Snohomish County and the rest of the old 1st Congressional District haven’t been represented in Congress since Jay Inslee resigned to run for governor.

That special election we had was supposed to fill the seat from the Dec. 6 certification of the election until the new Congress convenes in January, but Democrat Susan DelBene will take office early.

Katie Blinn, Washington co-director of elections in the secretary of state’s office, sent this explanation Friday:

“The Clerk of the U.S. House decides when the candidate may be seated. They requested that our office provide the unofficial results as soon as possible, if the outcome was clear. I think that, if the outcome of the election is clear, the U.S. House doesn’t feel obligated to wait until the election is certified. Apparently they have done this in the past.”

DelBene had 60 percent of the vote the week after Election Day in the special election for the short term. She also beat Republican John Koster for the full term in the new 1st District.

Evan Smith can be reached at schsmith@frontier.com

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