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Grand Junction mayor becomes latest Democrat to launch a bid to unseat Lauren Boebert

Anna Stout will face a primary with Adam Frisch, who nearly unseated incumbent in 2022

Grand Junction Mayor Anna Stout on Wednesday became the latest Democrat to launch a bid to unseat Republican U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert next year in Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District.

Stout’s entrance into the race – she filed campaign paperwork with the Federal Elections Commission – sets up a primary with Democrat Adam Frisch, a former Aspen city councilman who nearly unseated the bombastic congresswoman in 2022.

Frisch, who lost to Boebert by less than 600 votes in November, is running again in 2024, and has already amassed a sizable campaign cash war chest in his second attempt to dislodge Boebert. The 3rd District, which spans the Western Slope into Pueblo and southeastern Colorado, is expected to be a national focus in 2024 as the GOP looks to defend its majority in the U.S. House.

Stout declined to speak about her candidacy at length Wednesday when reached by The Colorado Sun. She said she will share more next week. Her campaign released a statement on Tuesday night, however, saying that the 3rd District deserves better than Boebert.

“As the mayor of my hometown, the largest city in western Colorado, I have a record of bringing people together to get things done and listening to the people I represent,” Stout said in a written statement. “I will take that same work ethic to Congress and build on my record of delivering real results for the hardworking people of our district.”

Stout

Stout was first elected to the Grand Junction City Council in 2019. She was reelected to her post in April and chosen by the council to serve as the city’s mayor.

A graduate of Colorado Mesa University, Stout is the founder and president of the Foundation for Cultural Exchange, a nonprofit that works to facilitate Grand Junction’s official sister city relationship in El Espino, El Salvador. In that role, she also organizes citizen exchange delegations.

State voter records show Stout was registered as an unaffiliated voter until June 6, when she became a Democrat.

Stout isn’t the only Democrat in the race besides Frisch.

Debby Burnett, a veterinarian in Gunnison who ran in 2022, has also jumped into the contest. However, Burnett failed to make the primary ballot in the last election cycle and she doesn’t have political experience like Frisch and Stout.

A competitive primary in the 3rd District, whose electorate leans in the GOP’s favor, could deplete Democratic resources heading into the general election.

The National Republican Congressional Committee, the GOP’s U.S. House campaign arm, said whoever wins the Democratic primary in the 3rd District will enter the general election “bruised and unpalatable.”

The Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan election prognosticator, says the 3rd District will be a tossup in 2024.

The Colorado Sun is a reader-supported, nonpartisan news organization dedicated to covering Colorado issues. To learn more, go to coloradosun.com.