John Colson: Looking at CD3, Mitsch Bush easily gets my vote
Hit & Run
Even as Colorado voters wrestle with the madness, lies and corruption of the administration of President Donald Trump, we have here in Garfield County a budding politician who seems to be promising to follow Trump’s lead in undermining the very government she purportedly seeks to serve.
Her name is Lauren Boebert, and she recently unseated five-term congressional incumbent Scott Tipton in the Colorado Republican primary.
Many of us living here in the hothouse (politically and geophysically) of the central Colorado Rockies knew something of Boebert even before she announced her candidacy.
She is the boss of an eatery known as Shooters Grill in the City of Rifle, about 25 miles west of Glenwood Springs, where the wait staff openly carries guns on their hips. Needless to say, she calls herself a “gun lover,” which implies close ties to the NRA, and she has publicly praised the insane spoutings of the shadowy right-wing hero, Q, and his Qanon followers.
The reality of Boebert is that she represents a deceitful, aggressive and relatively dim echo of the worst attributes of Trump, at a time when we need less, not more of his style of politics, governing and general comportment.
Her website offers few hints as to her beliefs or plans if elected, other than to vaguely defend “citizen rights” and “personal freedoms”; to vilify anyone to the left of herself as anti-American and “socialist”; and to follow anything Trump proposes or says.
She also, like Trump, seems to be perfectly willing to flout the law when it suits her, as shown by a couple of recent campaign appearances in Pitkin and Eagle counties.
Stories in our local newspapers related how, despite having worked with Pitkin County authorities on a “safety plan” for her campaign event in Aspen on Aug. 31, a subsequent Facebook video of the proceedings “showed that no one in attendance, including Boebert, was wearing a facemask or practicing social distancing,” according to a county official quoted in an Aspen Times news story.
This was in direct violation of county and state requirements, imposed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and “resulted in increased risk of transmission of the COVID-19 virus” to others in attendance, declared a letter sent to her campaign by county officials.
The county has no plans to punish Boebert or her campaign, because “the threat to public health doesn’t appear to be ongoing,” but I was intrigued by some of the online comments attached to the story.
“Does anyone expect her to follow any rules that she does not agree with?” asked someone named Dkoop. “I am a conservative, but she is scarry (sic) as hell. She already tried to make us all sick at the fairgrounds a few years ago. Wake up guys!!”
During a 2017 event at the Rifle Rodeo at the fairgrounds, a food truck that Boebert was running and didn’t have the proper license for was found to be the source of 80 people getting food poisoning.
“Arrogance and irresponsible behavior combined with lack of experience and education to do the job she is asking us to hire her for,” declared another commenter. “Lauren is dangerous for the prosperity and preservation of C3. She does not have the capacity to represent this district on a National level.”
According to the Times’ account of the video, Boebert told her audience, “We have people on the left who are trying to take away everything from us. They want to take away our rights, our freedom, our liberty. As the virus has shown us, they want to take away your right of where you can shop, when you can shop there, how old you have to be, at what time and certainly what you have to wear to be in a certain store.”
There’s plenty more, and I urge you to check out the story and the comments.
The point is, this is the same kind of deceitful drivel that Trump employs as a way to undermine people’s faith and trust in government.
Politicians of this stripe seek to demonize anyone who is not a Trump supporter with an onslaught of dishonest rhetoric that, frankly, discourages people from voting, as happened in 2016.
Her main opponent, Democrat Diane Mitsch Bush, is a veteran of the Colorado Legislature, a 43-year resident of the Western Slope, a former Routt County commissioner, and a retired sociology professor. Her personality beams with the kind of smarts and compassionate political beliefs that stand in marked contrast to Boebert’s admittedly flashy but critically insubstantial profile.
Mitsch Bush favors certain kinds of gun control as a way to tamp down our nation’s unfortunate rash of gun-related violence in recent years. She has a deep understanding of our country’s need for investment in infrastructure (highway, utilities, bridges, that sort of thing) in terms of both our basic needs and as a way to pull the nation out of its current COVID-related economic slump.
Mitsch Bush has pledged to stay away from corporate PAC money, and instead is relying on grassroots donations to fuel her campaign.
We do not need another Trump supporter in Congress such as Boebert — we’ve got too many of them already — but we do need common-sense legislators such as Mitsch Bush. I urge everyone who reads this to check out their respective online information, educate yourselves about their differences, and vote for Mitsch Bush on Nov. 3.
Email at firstname.lastname@example.org.