Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell smiles as she greets supporters during a campaign event on Monday. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, file)

Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell smiles as she greets supporters during a campaign event on Monday. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, file)

Maria Cantwell wins re-election, defeating Susan Hutchison

Cantwell will be serving her fourth term.

By Nicholas K. Geranios / Associated Press

SPOKANE — Democrat Maria Cantwell on Tuesday easily won re-election to a fourth term U.S. Senate from Washington, beating Republican Susan Hutchison.

Cantwell outdistanced Hutchison, a former Seattle TV anchor and state GOP party chairwoman.

A former tech executive who previously served one term the U.S. House and six years as a representative in the state Legislature, Cantwell will be serving her fourth term.

Cantwell has said voters want experienced representation in Congress and this year were paying attention to everything from the trade debate to health care and access to public lands.

She noted she’s fought the Trump administration on efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, but also cited bipartisan bills she’s worked on, including a low-income housing tax credit she co-sponsored with Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah.

Cantwell,60, also vastly outraised her challenger, who had cited military readiness and tougher immigration laws as top campaign issues.

It’s been nearly a quarter century since the GOP has captured a major statewide race in Washington. The last time voters sent a Republican to the U.S. Senate was 1994, when Sen. Slade Gorton was re-elected to his final term before being ousted by Cantwell in 2000. The last Republican governor, John Spellman, was elected in 1980. Republicans hold both the secretary of state and treasurer’s offices.

Hutchison was one of the most high-profile candidates Cantwell has faced. She spent two decades at KIRO-TV before leading the state Republican party for five years.

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