McMorris announces she'll run for Congress - State representative to step down as House minority leader

Jim Camden
Spokesman-Review Staff writer

Aug. 30, 2003

State Rep. Cathy McMorris will step down as House minority leader to join the race for Eastern Washington's 5th Congressional District seat.

McMorris, of Colville, on Friday notified other members of the House Republican Caucus that she plans to file paperwork with the Federal Elections Commission on Tuesday. She'll remain in the Legislature next year to finish out her term, but the caucus will pick a new leader on Sept.16.

In a telephone interview Friday, McMorris said she made the decision to enter the race this week.

"I think the deciding factor was the support I felt from people around the district," she said. "What I bring to the race is some valuable leadership experience. I have a proven (legislative) record."

McMorris, 34, was appointed in 1994 to a vacant House seat in northeast Washington's sprawling 7th District. She won an election that year and has coasted to re-election four times since then. This year she was chosen to lead Republicans in the House.

The congressional race will leave her legislative seat open in 2004 because state law does not allow a person to run for more than one office on the ballot.

McMorris will join two other announced candidates, Spokane County Sheriff Mark Sterk and State Sen. Larry Sheahan, in the race to succeed George Nethercutt.

The five-term congressman announced last month he is running for the Senate against Democratic incumbent Patty Murray.

•Jim Camden can be reached at 459-5461 or by e-mail at


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