Filing Deadline: July 31
Nov. 4, 1998 Sen. Patty Murray (D) fought back a challenge from Rep. Linda Smith (R), winning a second term with 58 percent of the vote to Smith's 42 percent, with 98 percent of precincts reporting.
Issues: Smith, a maverick freshman from the 3rd Congressional District, often clashed with the House GOP leadership and alienated party colleagues. A darling of conservative Christians, she opposed abortion rights and gun control, and voted against Newt Gingrich for a second term as speaker of the House.
Murray, a liberal and a prime target in the GOP push for a filibuster-proof, 60-seat Senate majority, backed environmental issues and abortion rights. She was one of five female senators to pressure the Ethics Committee to hold public hearings on the sexual harassment charges against Sen. Bob Packwood (R-Ore.).
Polls: A poll conducted Oct. 26-27 by Mason Dixon Political/Media Research poll showed Murray with 49 percent, Smith with 41 percent and 10 percent undecided. The survey had a 3.5 percent margin of error.
Fund-raising: According to Federal Election Commission reports, Murray raised about $4.8 million, spent nearly $4.4 million and had about $448,000 in cash on hand in mid-October. Smith raised more than $3.9 million, spent nearly $3.8 million and had about $169,000 on hand.
Lisa Todorovich, washingtonpost.com
Lisa Todorovich can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
© Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company
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