Rep. Perez lands endorsement from Washington’s largest police union

U.S. Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez this week picked up an endorsement from the Washington Council of Police and Sheriffs, the state’s largest and oldest police union.
“I’m absolutely honored to be endorsed by Southwest Washington’s rank and file peace officers,” said Perez, D-Skamania. “These are the men and women out in our communities, night and day, putting their lives on the line to keep us safe.”
The union did not endorse a 3rd Congressional District candidate in the 2022 general election but did endorse former Republican Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler in the primary.
In 2022, the union endorsed Republican Tiffany Smiley over democratic incumbent Patty Murray in the race for U.S. Senate.
This cycle, in addition to Perez, the union endorsed Republican state Sen. Drew MacEwen who is running for Washington’s 6th Congressional District. The seat is currently held by Democrat Derek Kilmer. The union also endorsed Carmen Goers, a Republican running for Washington’s 8th Congressional District, which is currently held by Democrat Kim Schrier.
“It’s no guarantee they endorse incumbents, and it’s definitely no guarantee they endorse Democrats,” said Phil Gardener, Perez’s senior advisor.
Perez said that she has made a point to spend time with local law enforcement, adding she recently went on a ride along with the Vancouver Police Department to “see what it’s like on the beat for them.”
“It’s a very emotionally and psychologically taxing job,” she said. “I will always stand up for them in Congress and here at home.”
That engagement, coupled with her voting record, contributed to the endorsement, she said.
She pointed to her vote earlier this month in favor of the POLICE Act to amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to make explicit that assaulting law enforcement officers is a deportable act. She is a cosponsor of the HELPER Act, which creates a one-time home loan program for law enforcement members, and she supported increased funding for the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant program & COPS grant program.
Perez said the endorsement is “a good sign of growing support” for her campaign.
“More people are seeing the work that I’m doing, the votes that I’m taking, and I plan to just continue to stay focused on doing the work,” she said.
— Dylan Jefferies
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