Suzan DelBene

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Democrat Suzan DelBene cruised to an easy victory in her first re-election bid in the state’s 1st Congressional District.

At last count, DelBene is leading Republican challenger Pedro Celis 55 to 44 percent.

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Viet Shelton and Sandeep Kaushik were two of the key players in Suzan DelBene's successful run for Congress in Washington's 1st District in 2012. This year, they are back running DelBene's re-election campaign. 

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Congresswoman Suzan DelBene was elected in November to represent Washington's 1st District. How has she spent her first few months in office? Ross Reynolds sits down with Congresswoman DelBene for an update on what she has been working on and her thoughts on gun control, marijuana legalization, immigration and looming federal budget cuts.

Suzan DelBene
Amy Radil

At a post-election lunch for politicians and labor leaders, Democrats were savoring their victories, but also contemplating the tough choices awaiting progressives in Congress this month.

The stakes in this race are high for both political parties. There are three open Congressional seats in the state this year, and Republicans say the 1st District is their best chance to win one.

Candidates John Koster (R) and Suzan DelBene (D) sit down with KUOW's Ross Reynolds for a debate. The candidates address the economy, women's reproductive issues and each other's campaigns thus far.

Suzan DelBene at a podium
KUOW/Deborah Wang

On the campaign trail, Suzan DelBene tells the story of how her family struggled when she was a kid. Her father was laid off from his job when she was nine, and the family moved all over the country as her parents looked for work. “They never got back to a situation where they were financially stable,” she explains.

She recounts that despite her family's financial difficulties, she was able to go to college on student loans. “I was in a position to take care of my family,” she says. “I’m not sure I could tell that story today.”