- Associated Press - Thursday, October 16, 2014

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - Dan Newhouse has raised about $726,000 in his campaign to replace retiring U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings, far outpacing fellow Republican Clint Didier.

Newhouse raised about $333,000 in the last quarter ending Sept. 30, according to the most recent filings with the Federal Elections Commission. Didier raised $175,000 in that same time frame, bringing his total contributions to more than $423,000. That amount includes a $30,000 loan Didier made to his campaign.

Newhouse has nearly $162,000 on hand heading into the final weeks of the campaign, and Didier has about $98,000 in the bank.

Didier and Newhouse are running for the U.S. House seat in the 4th District, covering central Washington. Hastings, a Republican who announced in February his retirement after 20 years in Congress, has endorsed Newhouse.

Newhouse, a farmer, was agriculture director in the cabinet of former Democratic Gov. Chris Gregoire. He previously served six years in the Washington House of Representatives, representing the Yakima Valley. Didier, a former NFL player, is also a farmer.

This election is the first time in state history that two candidates from the same party are facing off in a general election for a U.S. House seat.

Since 2008, Washington has had a top-two primary system, meaning that the top two vote-getters regardless of party affiliation advance to the general election. Both Didier, a tea party favorite, and Newhouse, a mainstream conservative, emerged from a crowded primary in August.

The district covers one of the nation’s major fruit and vegetable baskets, growing much of the U.S. supply of apples, cherries, grapes and hops to flavor beer. It’s also home to the giant Hanford Nuclear Reservation, a federal installation that contains the nation’s largest volume of nuclear waste and is engaged in a multibillion-dollar cleanup.

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