Lauren Boebert fends off attacks during first primary debate for new district

Fort Lupton, Colorado - Congresswoman Lauren Boebert battled eight other candidates in a Colorado GOP primary debate on Thursday night, as she tries desperately to win over voters in her new congressional district.

House Representative Lauren Boebert participated in a local Republican debate on Thursday as she runs for re-election in a new district of Colorado.
House Representative Lauren Boebert participated in a local Republican debate on Thursday as she runs for re-election in a new district of Colorado.  © WIN MCNAMEE / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

Boebert recently announced her move to the 4th District from the 3rd, where she will be seeking re-election to Congress for her second term.

Many speculate that the move came because Adam Frisch, her Democratic challenger for the 3rd District, was on a path to beating her and the 4th District is considered a safe bet for conservative candidates.

"I am here to earn your vote. This is not a coronation," Boebert said in her opening remarks of the debate at the Fort Lupton Recreation Center.

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As one of the more notable names on the stage, Boebert was easily the biggest target and spent the night fending off hard questions and attacks.

Instead of fighting fire with fire, however, she did her best to appear humble.

At one point, state Rep. and candidate Mike Lynch asked, "Can you give the definition of 'carpetbagger' to me?"

"My boys and I needed a fresh start," Boebert answered.

"That's been very public of what home life looks like. And I'm sorry to bring that up. I tried to put it into a very pretty package and bring my ex-husband lots of honor, but since there is nothing private about my personal life, it is out there."

"My boys need some freedom from what has been going on, and this move is the right move for me and them," she added.

Lauren Boebert seeks redemption after chaotic year

Congresswoman Lauren Boebert delivering remarks in the House Chamber on January 5, 2023.
Congresswoman Lauren Boebert delivering remarks in the House Chamber on January 5, 2023.  © WIN MCNAMEE / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

Boebert's choice to abandon her former district comes after a chaotic year.

Her most infamous moment came in September when she and a date were kicked out of a musical performance in Denver for reportedly vaping, groping each other, and raucous behavior during the show.

But Boebert was far from the only candidate on the debate stage with a questionable past.

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According to Axios, Lynch – who asked the "carpetbagger" question – resigned as House Republican Leader last year after he was caught trying to cover up an arrest for a DUI and gun possession.

Candidate state Rep. Richard Holtorf, who is a well-known pro-life advocate, also recently admitted that he got an abortion for his girlfriend so she could "live her best life."

At one point during the debate, the candidates were asked to raise a hand if they had ever been arrested. Six hands shot up, including Boebert's, and the candidates proceeded to high-five each other as the crowd laughed and cheered.

"Do we get to say what for?" Boebert joked. "I guess it doesn't matter."

She also took time to mention that she will be voting for Donald Trump in the 2024 presidential election, describing it as "his third victory as president."

Following the debate, a straw poll was taken in which Boebert placed fifth behind Lynch and Holtorf for "most favored by viewers."

Cover photo: WIN MCNAMEE / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

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