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McDevitt Hoping Third Time’s the Charm in Run for Congress

Candidate David McDevitt

Photo by Sverre Bakke
Candidate David McDevitt

“Putting People First” is the campaign slogan for Washington State 3rd District Congressional candidate David McDevitt, who is looking to unseat the incumbent, Jaime Herrera Beutler.

McDevitt, in a press release by his campaign, “Bills himself as the most progressive candidate in a race that features two other Democratic hopefuls.”

Those other hopefuls are WSU Political Science professor Carolyn Long and U.S. Army veteran Dorothy Gasque.

McDevitt grew up in San Francisco, Calif., and began working as a paperboy at the age of 10 after his father passed away. Upon graduating from high school, Mc-Devitt briefly attended San Fran-cisco State before enlisting in the U.S. Army in 1975 where he served three years of active duty and three years of reserves.

While in the reserves he returned to San Francisco State, where he earned both his undergrad and master’s degree. An entrepreneurial spirit endeared him to start his own companies. He felt the call to public service again in 2005 and he began attending law school at John F. Kennedy University. In 2012, shortly after moving to Vancouver, he passed the California Bar exam and has been reading and writing about the law since.

McDevitt has also been actively involved in volunteer organizations like Big Brothers Big Sisters, United Way, and Aids Life Cycle.

Since announcing his run for Congress, of which this is his third attempt, McDevitt has given close to $500,000 of his own money to the campaign; he has received roughly $5,000 in small, individual donations.

“Jaime has quite the war chest, it’s going to take a lot to beat her,” said McDevitt in a phone interview with The Enterprise.

In the same interview, The Enterprise asked McDevitt about his familiarity with the issues facing the 3rd District, the Columbia River Gorge, and White Salmon.

“I am very familiar with the Gorge area, having campaigned there several times over the last decade. I also have family and close friends who live in White Salmon. So, I’ve spent some time there as well on a personal level,” said McDevitt.

Some of the issues facing White Salmon and the Gorge overall are infrastructures, affordable/multifamily housing, and healthcare.

On healthcare, McDevitt believes that the Affordable Care Act cannot be fixed and that the best solution is Medicare for All.

“The reason the ACA cannot be fixed is that it was written with the help of the insurance and pharmaceutical industries,” he said.

“People are getting less coverage and higher premiums because that’s how the law was negotiated with these industries. People are afraid to go to the doctor because with or without health insurance they could end up bankrupt. Nothing will change if these entities are involved,” said McDevitt.

McDevitt believes that shifting to a Medicare for All system at the state level will shift the narrative nationally.

On affordable housing, McDevitt talked about the high cost of renting is a consequence of the Washington State law that more or less prohibits rent control.

“I think at some point the people need to approach the growing industries like Insitu and Google and ask how are you going to handle housing people, how are you going to help the community adapt to this growth? And then, find a balance between development to fit a need and development to protect a landscape,” said McDevitt.

McDevitt also spoke with The Enterprise about the replacement of the Hood River-White Salmon Interstate Bridge.

“The truth is, neither Washington nor Oregon at the state level can afford all of their infrastructure updates. They are also not on the same page of what needs to be a priority of improvement. One side is focused on broadband and Internet access, the other on roads and bridges. The best solution, in my opinion, is to have a congressionally authorized group, with equal representation from both states, work together to get on the same page and address these issues,” said McDevitt.


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