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Michael Officially Announces for Congress

Here's the press release the campaign put out today at 1 PM


February 26, 2024

Michael Baumgartner Announces Candidacy for 5th District Congressional Seat

Spokane, WA – Today, Michael Baumgartner, Spokane County Treasurer, and former Washington State Senator, announced his candidacy for the United States Congress representing Washington's 5th District.

“I was born and raised in Eastern Washington and I’ll have the experience to fight for our priorities and win,” Baumgartner said.

“I’m running for Congress to protect the American Dream. We see all around us serious challenges that are not being fixed: fentanyl and other drugs pouring in the country; law breakers entering by the thousands every day; homeless encampments and forlorn people crowding the sidewalks and underpasses. It’s got to stop. Overseas, America is in retreat, while China and Russia bully their neighbors.

“We need people willing to fight for the American Dream and the values we all grew up believing in. Half measures won’t cut it. I’m not going to stand on the sidelines while the American Dream dies. Not for my kids. Not for any of the kids in Eastern Washington,” Baumgartner said.

“I've been blessed with a fantastic life – an amazing wife, Eleanor, five awesome kids, and a career that's let me serve in ways I never imagined. But I worry about what the future holds. It's time for action, not just talk. We need leaders ready to fight for what we believe in, and that's why I'm stepping up," Baumgartner declared.

Baumgartner's career in public service is marked by significant achievements, including his pivotal role in the successful efforts to establish a new WSU medical school in Spokane, funding to finish the North-South freeway and securing a historic reduction in college tuition costs. His "Drain the Swamp” legislation eliminated five government agencies to curb bureaucratic waste.

Baumgartner is running for the seat currently held by Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, who is not seeking re-election after 20 years in the House.

“Cathy has been an inspiration, setting a very high standard with a clear focus on the needs of Eastern Washington – from saving the dams, keeping Fairchild Air Force Base open, as well as serving military families, veterans and the disabled. She has shown what true compassion and integrity look like.”

Baumgartner‘s campaign also released a list of its Campaign Chairs and endorsements.  Notably, the campaign is co-chaired by legendary former WSU Quarterback Jack “the Throwin’ Samoan” Thompson, local long-time State Senator Mike Padden of Spokane, and Michael’s wife Eleanor Baumgartner.

Baumgartner has been endorsed by community leaders from across the Fifth District – which stretches from the Oregon border to the Canadian border – and by high-profile Republicans like gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi and former Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna.

Baumgartner said he expects a hard-fought campaign, with all Republicans unifying behind a single candidate after the August election.

“Some good people have already announced they’re running for the seat, and I expect more people will throw their hat in the ring. I’m just going to work as hard as ever, knocking on doors, meeting people and putting out a clear message. I believe I have the experience and fire to be a strong voice for Eastern Washington in Congress –to clearly communicate our values and priorities.

As Treasurer, Baumgartner has overseen investments that have yielded over $120 million for taxpayers. A recipient of the "Champion of Freedom Award" from the Washington Policy Center, Baumgartner has also been an active voice in the GOP, serving as MC for the State Republican Gala dinner and auctioneer for the Spokane County Republican Lincoln Day Dinner. His political journey includes a noteworthy campaign as the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate in Washington in 2012.

Beyond politics, Baumgartner's diverse background includes roles as a U.S. State Department Officer in Iraq, a contracted embedded counternarcotics advisor in Afghanistan, and a business consultant in the Middle East.

Baumgartner has a BA in Economics from Washington State University and an Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University, His personal life, shared with his wife Eleanor and their five children, reflects his commitment to family and the values he aims to protect and promote through his congressional campaign.

Baumgartner's campaign is hitting the ground running, with meet-and-greets and events from Walla Walla to Lincoln County.


NOTE: The Baumgartner campaign released the following announcement video:

Here is another version without background music:

Contact: Michael Baumgartner / (509) 847 9568 /


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