It is now less than a year until the 2024 election, and while all eyes are on the presidential race – both the Democrats and Republicans see opportunities to pick up or lose seats in both the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. Controlling Congress could be just as critical to the respective parties’ agendas.
That fact explains why the GOP may be considering “alternative” options to firebrand Congresswoman Lauren Boebert of Colorado. While she stormed to the scene in 2020, unexpectedly defeating five-term incumbent Republican Scott Tipton and went on to win the general election, she faced an uphill battle in the 2022 midterms, where she defeated former Aspen City Council member Adam Frisch by just 546 votes.
Some Republicans in the Centennial State are now beginning to question whether the time has come to consider an alternative – lest Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District is successfully flipped as Democratic challengers including Frisch are set to go all in. An August poll found that Frisch had a slight edge over Boeberg, with 50 percent support of likely voters compared to 48 percent for Boebert.
Located in Western Colorado, the 3rd Congressional District was last won by a Democrat in 2008. It had been a solidly Republican district throughout the 1990s and early 2000s. When incumbent Rep. Scott McInnis declined to seek reelection in 2004, Democrat John Salazar won the seat. Salazar was subsequently defeated by Tipton in the 2010 election.
Given that Salazar won reelection twice, it is easy to see why the GOP is signaling concerns that the district could be flipped.
Is Boebert Just Too Extreme?
An ally and supporter of former president Donald Trump, Boebert claims the 2020 election was stolen and voted to overturn its result. She has also been accused of supporting QAnon conspiracy theories and was opposed to Covid-19 mask and vaccine mandates.
She is also struggling to shake a high-profile scandal from September – in which she was caught on a security camera causing quite the disturbance during a performance of the musical Beetlejuice at a Denver theater. The newly divorced Boebert and her date – who turned out to be a registered Democrat – were escorted out of the theater after they were accused by the venue of aping, singing, recording, and demanding special treatment.
Boebert initially denied some of her actions, but after a surveillance video emerged and contradicted her claims, the lawmaker issued an apology, saying her behavior was unacceptable, The Washington Examiner reported.
Hurd About It
Boebert’s biggest challenge could come from attorney Jeff Hurd of Grand Junction, who has the support of several county commissioners, donors, and Colorado’s last Republican governor.
“The reason Jeff got in this race was because voters all over the district and Colorado are fed up with Rep. Boebert, specifically her inability to deliver results for our district, and her disgraceful behavior as an elected official,” Hurd’s campaign told the Washington Examiner on Saturday. “Since her disappointing antics in September, Republicans all over the district have expressed concern that our chances of keeping the seat with her as our nominee are slim. We are proud to have the support of many local and state conservative leaders who know Jeff will be a leader of character, and deliver results for the district.”
It will still be voters in her district that matter most – and given the narrow thin margin, she can’t afford to lose a single one. Boebert will need to convince them that she’s still the best choice to serve their interests in Congress.
However, Boebert does have some significant advantages, including her national name recognition and the support of the House Republican election arm.
“I recognize that I’m definitely the underdog here, at least to start,” Hurd told CPR News, adding that he believed that voters in the district were ready for a change. “Someone who doesn’t demonize those who disagree, and someone who is a serious negotiator on issues that matter to Colorado.”
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.