Congresswoman Lauren Boebert Leads a Crowded Field One Week From Colorado GOP Primary

Any resistance to Congresswoman Lauren Boebert in her new district has failed to coalesce around another GOP primary candidate.

AP/Patrick Semansky, file
Representative Lauren Boebert during a news conference on Capitol Hill, July 14, 2023. AP/Patrick Semansky, file

In one week, Congresswoman Lauren Boebert will face her first primary election in her new district, after leaving her old one to avoid what was anticipated to be a close general election campaign.

Ahead of the 2024 election, Ms. Boebert announced that she would be moving to Colorado’s Fourth District and leaving Colorado’s Third Congressional District, where she was elected to Congress in 2020 and re-elected in 2022.

The move meant she would not face off against her 2022 Democratic opponent, Adam Frisch, who came within half a point of winning in 2022, again this year. The move did, however, put her into a more competitive primary than she would have faced in her old district.

On June 25, Ms. Boebert will face the GOP primary voters at her new district for the first time, and most indicators suggest that she’s poised to win the competition.

A late May Kaplan Strategies survey of 343 likely voters in the district found that she had 40 percent support in the six-way primary while her closest competitor, businessman Peter Yu, only had 5 percent support.

Ms. Boebert has also significantly out-fundraised her opponents, bringing in about $2 million for her campaign, according to the latest Federal Elections Commission filings. Her best-funded opponent, conservative radio host Deborah Flora, has only raised about $418,000.

Ms. Boebert’s strong positioning in the primary comes despite — or perhaps because of — her penchant for making headlines and her position as one of the loudest voices on the GOP’s right fringe in the House.

Some of Ms. Boebert’s drama that has garnered attention over the course of her campaign include the arrest of her son on charges of vehicle trespass and theft and the removal of her and her date from a performance of “Beetlejuice” early this year.

Ms. Boebert was removed from the “Beetlejuice” performance for singing, vaping, and using a cell phone during the performance. Video of the incident that surfaced after it became public depicted the congresswoman and her date groping each other during the performance.

Some of Ms. Boebert’s opponents have attempted to make hay on Ms. Boebert’s numerous scandals. A state senator, Jerry Sonnenberg, has stated repeatedly that the district needs a “work horse, not a show horse.”

“Integrity and character in my neck of the woods is vital,” Mr. Sonnenberg said at a debate. “If you’re looking for someone that wants to be on TV, I’m not it. If you want somebody that’s a work horse, and not a show horse, that’s me.”

Other opponents of Ms. Boebert’s have also attacked her for her decision to switch districts, or for the lack of major legislation that Republicans have passed during Ms. Boebert’s time in Congress. Any opposition to Ms. Boebert has, however, failed to coalesce around a single candidate.

Also helping Ms. Boebert in her Republican primary is the endorsement of President Trump, who said she “is a Proven Conservative and Effective Leader.”

If Ms. Boebert is victorious next week, she could still face a competitive election in November — the very thing she sought to avoid by switching districts.

Her likely Democratic opponent, state Representative Ike McCorkle, has been touting a survey conducted for his campaign by Gravis Marketing, which found that Mr. McCorkle led Ms. Boebert 38 percent to 31 percent, with 30 percent undecided.

The same survey also found that the same respondents preferred Trump to President Biden, 44 percent to 29 percent, suggesting that there are some voters in the district who might consider voting split ticket this year.

In reference to the potential general election matchup Mr. McCorkle tells the Sun “our campaign continues to show that we have the message and resources to take on Lauren Boebert in November.” 

“Our momentum continues to grow, and we out raised Lauren Boebert for the second filing period in a row,” Mr. McCorkle says. “These numbers send a clear message that Americans across the political spectrum want Lauren Bobert out of Congress.”

Whether or not the results of the Gravis Marketing survey would hold up through the election is not clear. Surveys this far from the election tend not to be predictive of final results, and there has been no public polling of the district.

Neither Ms. Boebert nor Mr. McCorkle immediately responded to a request for comment.

The New York Sun

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