RBC | Lauren Boebert’s first job was at McDonald’s when she was still a teenager. Getting those first paychecks — and being able to provide for herself — had a deep impact on her perspective of government and personal responsibility.
“I grew up in a Democrat home,” Bobert says of her family history. “My mom believed all those failed [government] promises. She believed you need the government to support you.”
Boebert quickly determined she could do a better job of taking care of herself than the government had done. “There was such a sense of pride that came with that,” she said.
Originally from Florida, Boebert, 33, came to the Western Slope when she was 12. She lives in Rifle with her husband and their four sons, ages 14, 12, 10 and 7. The boys attend a private school in Glenwood Springs. Her husband, who came to Colorado from Las Vegas, works in the oil and gas industry.
“We had to develop conservative values over the years,” she says of herself and her husband. “We learned that when times get tough, we buckle down and get tougher.”
The volatility of the oil and gas industry prompted the couple to open Shooters Grill in Rifle in 2013 as “a backup plan for ourselves and to employ others in our community.”
The restaurant gained national media attention for its open carry gun policy. Wait staff, including Boebert, open carry guns on site. Boebert said that decision was made after a man was beaten to death in the alley behind the restaurant, prompting concern for her own safety and that of her employees.
“I studied the gun laws and I saw how the government was trying to restrict Americans’ ability to protect themselves,” Boebert said.
She made national news again last year in Aurora at a campaign rally for Beto O’Rourke.
“I knew he was going to pander to the victims of shooting crimes, and that’s exactly what he did,” she said. “The common theme he was missing is that those victims were all defenseless, in gun-free zones.”
She’s taken tough stances against Colorado’s “red flag” law passed last year, comprehensive sex education, and the National Popular Vote initiative, which would do away with the electoral college for presidential elections. She’s also actively circulated petitions for national right to life campaign and recall petitions.
While she’s been busy “advocating for freedom” on a state level, she’s also dissatisfied with the way U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton (R–Cortez) has represented Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District in Washington during his tenure. Tipton took office in 2011.
“On a national level you have AOC [first term New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez] and the rest of the ‘Squad,’ — left-wing lunatics who are completely directing the narrative for the rest of our country. Our reps are not challenging them,” Boebert said.
She announced her intention in late 2019 to run against Tipton in the Republican primary in 2020.
Asked about her qualifications to hold the office she’s seeking, Boebert said she “had to work” instead of finishing school and has not served on any appointed or elected boards.
“I’ve just been on the ground with the people doing the work to secure our freedom here. If we had someone representing us on a national level well I wouldn’t feel the need to step up,” she said. “I don’t believe our founding fathers ever intended Congress to be a complicated issue. It’s supposed to be ‘we the people’ who are governing. We don’t need to be political scholars.”
While Boebert doesn’t have any current plans for policies or proposals to present in Washington she believes there’s “plenty of time” for that.
“I’m an advocate for freedom, personal responsibility and the U.S. Constitution. I very much support our president and his policies,” Boebert says. “I believe we in Western Colorado should be taking charge and leading in conservative values.”
Boebert will be in Meeker this Friday, Jan. 3 at Kilowatt Korner at 5:30 p.m. for a meet-and-greet campaign event.
By NIKI TURNER | firstname.lastname@example.org