Filling Inslee Congress seat cost $791,000

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EVERETT, Wash. (AP) — A special election triggered by Gov. Jay Inslee’s resignation from Congress cost Washington taxpayers $791,000.

The Daily Herald reports Washington election officials are reimbursing Snohomish, King and Kitsap counties for the cost of an election to fill the final month of Inslee’s term. Inslee left office early to run for governor.

Suzan DelBene won the special election and the regular election in the 1st Congressional District.

A Democrat, Inslee resigned his congressional seat March 20, 2012, to campaign full-time against Republican Rob McKenna. Inslee left with seven months still in his term.

His decision led to a situation requiring two elections for one seat in two geographical regions.

Redistricting created new boundaries for congressional districts for the 2012 elections but federal rules required the special election be held within the old boundaries of the 1st District.

That meant for the special election ballots went to voters in an area stretching from south Snohomish County through King County and into Kitsap County. The area included Mukilteo, Edmonds, Lynnwood and part of Monroe.

While those voters picked someone to complete Inslee’s term, voters in the redrawn district chose a successor to serve a two-year term representing an area from Medina in King County to the Canadian border. The new boundaries include farmland and small towns of east Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties.

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