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Lauren Boebert takes on progressive politicians in Durango campaign stop

Candidate says, ‘This is ours to win’

Lauren Boebert, a Republican candidate for the U.S. House, took on progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, mail-in voting and her competitor, Diane Mitsch Bush, during a campaign stop Friday in Durango.

Boebert and Mitsch Bush, a Democrat from Steamboat Springs, are vying to represent the Western Slope in the U.S. House of Representatives. Days ahead of the national elections, more Colorado Democrats have voted. Boebert and other Republican candidates urged Coloradans to get out and vote.

“This is ours to win,” Boebert said. “I was down 10 to 1 in the primary, and I expected to get outspent again. ... But we are not outworked.”

Boebert has raised about $2.1 million, $1.6 million less than Mitsch Bush, according to the latest Federal Election Commission reports.

Lauren Boebert, candidate for Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, poses for a photo with supporters Friday during a campaign stop at the Wild Horse Saloon.
Colorado Rep. Ken Buck, R-Windsor, speaks in support of 3rd Congressional District candidate Lauren Boebert during a campaign stop Friday at the Wild Horse Saloon. Both candidates urged people to get out and vote.

About 90 people gathered Friday afternoon at the Wild Horse Saloon in Durango to hear Boebert, Rep. Ken Buck and Marilyn Harris, a first-time political candidate running for state Legislature.

Boebert, a business owner from Rifle, spoke against the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, on the ballot as Proposition 113, and in support of the oil and gas industry. She pitted herself against Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, from the Bronx, New York, and other representatives, known as “The Squad.”

“We’re putting our foot down and saying, ‘They don’t represent me,’” she said.

Marilyn Harris, a Republican candidate for state House District 59, speaks during a campaign stop Friday in Durango.

She said that if Congress changed the rules to let Rep. Ilhan Omar wear a hijab on the House floor, they should change the rules to let Boebert carry her firearm.

Boebert also cast some barbs at Mitsch Bush, saying her competitor lies about her background and her own record. Mitsch Bush, a former state representative, said Boebert is an “extremist” during a virtual town hall Wednesday.

“I don’t think there’s anything extreme about standing up for the Constitution of the United States and believing in the American people,” Boebert said in response Friday.

Buck, incumbent representative for eastern Colorado, was “feeling good” about his own race before the election. Buck is running against Isaac McCorkle, a Democratic Marine veteran from Parker.

As chairman of the Colorado Republican Party, Buck said he wasn’t worried about other Republican races. He has his eye on the state Senate races and the race between Sen. Cory Gardner and former Gov. John Hickenlooper for the U.S. Senate.

Lauren Boebert, candidate for Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, speaks with Susan Bennett, center, and a supporter who did not want to giver her name, Friday during a campaign stop at the Wild Horse Saloon.

More than 1 million Coloradans, mostly Democrats, have voted already. Boebert and Buck urged people to use mail-in ballots, despite statements by President Donald Trump questioning their legitimacy.

When Trump talks about problems with mail-in ballots, he is talking about other states, Buck told the crowd.

“Here in Colorado we do an excellent job with mail-in ballots,” Boebert said. “We’ve had this process for years. I’m pretty confident in it. We see some hiccups now and then, but that’s why we go down and drop off our ballots.”

smullane@durangoherald.com

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