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Joe Kent says he's filing for an official recount in WA-03 after loss

In the race for Washington's 3rd Congressional District, Republican Joe Kent says he will pay for a recount after failing to meet the automatic .5% threshold.

VANCOUVER, Wash. — Editor's note: This story was updated Tuesday with Joe Kent's announcement that he would be officially filing for a recount in Washington's 3rd District. The video above aired Friday, when he'd only indicated that he would fundraise for a potential recount.

Republican congressional candidate Joe Kent said he'll soon be filing for a recount in the race for Washington's 3rd Congressional District after announcing last week that he would begin fundraising for the possibility.

The Associated Press, the Oregonian, and other organizations projected that Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez would win the seat nearly two weeks ago.

Gluesenkamp Perez leads Kent by 2,629 votes, or a margin of 0.84%. The process of counting and "curing" ballots ended Tuesday, and certified numbers have been sent to the Washington Secretary of State's office.

The state of Washington automatically issues a recount when a race is within 0.5%, but Kent and his team said Friday that they might pay for a recount themselves if the difference doesn't reach that threshold.

"My campaign is taking steps to raise the money to pay for an optional recount," Kent said in a statement. "I will accept the eventual outcome of this election as determined by the Secretary of State, and my campaign will continue to work to ensure that the final count is as accurate as possible."

Kent cited the "small margin" of votes between himself and Gluesenkamp Perez as reason why he may pay for a recount.

In a Tuesday tweet, after county election officials finalized their tallied results and submitted them to the state for certification, Kent announced that his campaign would move ahead with their own recount.

"We will be filing for an official recount in the next 24-48 hours to fight for our voters and for every legal vote to be counted," Kent said. "The fight continues! More to follow tomorrow!"

There's no set amount that an optional recount would cost Kent and his campaign. The price is determined by a canvassing board, which judges how expensive it would be for each county to recount its ballots.

Kent repeatedly stated throughout his campaign that he will accept the certified results of this election, but he's also expressed doubts about the outcome of the 2020 election.

"I am grateful for all of the hard work the election workers are doing across the seven counties of Washington's 3rd Congressional District," Kent said in a statement last week. "It is a difficult and too often thankless job."

Kent's campaign team did not respond to KGW's interview request today. 

Kent did not speak with KGW or other press members on Election Night, and he has not responded to multiple interview requests in the past two weeks.

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