King County Councilman Joe McDermott has conceded defeat in the primary election to represent the 7th Congressional District. As of this afternoon's ballot count, former State Representative Brady Walkinshaw was beating McDermott 21.2 percent to 19.7 percent.
"As ballots continue to be counted in the 7th Congressional District race, it is now clear I will not be in the top two moving into the General Election," McDermott wrote in an e-mailed statement. "While I am disappointed and had deeply wanted to serve our district, I sincerely congratulate Senator Jayapal and Representative Walkinshaw on the positive and engaging primary campaign they ran." He continued:
I remain confident and hopeful that real work can be done on the important issues we’ve led on during this race – campaign finance reform including overturning Citizens United, and tackling the public health epidemic that is gun violence in our country. I remain just as passionate about these issues moving forward as I was in 2008 when passing statewide campaign finance reform, in 2013 when we declared gun violence a public health crisis in King County, and over the past seven months of this hard fought campaign.
"Joe's run a wonderful campaign and I think he's the reason we've had issues like gun violence and campaign financing on the table," Walkinshaw told The Stranger. "We're excited for the race and I think our message is resonating with voters who are encouraged by the late momentum we saw over the last month. I think Councilman McDermott has run a strong campaign.
Walkinshaw will now face Senator Pramila Jayapal in the November general election. She's won 41.5 percent of the district's primary election votes.