Written by Ashton Snyder on
 June 5, 2024

Boebert's Absence Highlights GOP Debate

Representative Lauren Boebert's absence from a GOP primary debate sparked criticism from her rivals vying for Colorado's 4th Congressional District seat.

According to Newsweek, Boebert's controversial switch to a new district and her personal scandals were focal points of the debate. Boebert's GOP opponents accused her of avoiding the debate to dodge questions about her record and district switch.

Representative Lauren Boebert, a Colorado Republican, announced in December 2023 that she would run for the state's 4th Congressional District, citing a "fresh start" following a tumultuous year for her family. Critics suggest her switch was motivated by fears of losing to Democrat Adam Frisch, who she narrowly defeated in the 2022 midterms by a margin of around 500 votes.

Debate Criticism Intensifies

The debate, hosted by the Republican Women of Weld and the Lincoln Club of Colorado, featured Boebert's five GOP rivals but was notably absent of the congresswoman herself. Despite participating in two debates the previous week, Boebert did not attend this one, drawing ire from her competitors. They lambasted her legislative record, her decision to vote against certifying the 2020 presidential election results, and her connection to the district.

Boebert has received endorsements from key Republican figures, including House leadership, the Colorado Republican Party, and former President Donald Trump. Trump's support has been vocal and unwavering, describing her as a "Proven Conservative and Effective Leader" and a "trusted America First Fighter."

Rivals Question Boebert's Commitment

State Representative Mike Lynch criticized Boebert for not showing up, emphasizing his own legislative achievements and dedication to his district. "This race and this time is important enough that we need people who know how to get stuff done," Lynch stated. "I would never abandon my district."

Deborah Flora, a former talk radio presenter, stressed the need for the party to rebuild. "This district needs someone that reflects them and will reach out to our neighbors and treat them like what they are—not our enemy," Flora said. She positioned herself as a unifier who understands and respects her constituents.

Former state Senator Jerry Sonnenberg emphasized the importance of integrity and character. "If you're looking for someone that wants to be on TV, I'm not it. If you want somebody that's a workhorse, and not a show horse, that's me," Sonnenberg asserted, highlighting his commitment to working hard for the district.

Personal Scandals and Legislative Record

Boebert has faced backlash over personal scandals, including an incident where she was kicked out of a Denver theater for inappropriate behavior. This, combined with her legislative choices, has given her opponents ample ammunition.

Peter Yu, a business owner, and Richard Holtorf, another state representative, also criticized Boebert during the debate. Yu underscored his local connections, stating, "I believe hard work matters, people realize that's who I am, that's why I'm out there."

Invoking a sense of urgency, Holtorf called for a "fighter" to represent the district. He criticized Boebert's voting record, particularly her opposition to water projects that are important to Colorado.

Pollster Floyd Ciruli noted that despite Boebert's controversies, her financial resources, name recognition, and Trump's support could give her an edge. "She's got the money, she's got universal name identification," Ciruli remarked, acknowledging the multi-candidate ballot might play in her favor.


Lauren Boebert's absence from the GOP primary debate for Colorado's 4th Congressional District seat has drawn significant criticism from her rivals. The debate, marked by attacks on her legislative record and personal scandals, highlighted the contentious nature of her candidacy. With endorsements from Trump and other Republican leaders, Boebert remains a formidable contender despite her current polling challenges. Her opponents, emphasizing their own connections and commitments to the district, aim to present themselves as more viable alternatives to the controversial congresswoman.

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About Ashton Snyder

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