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Conservative candidates say Lauren Boebert doesn't know Colorado's 4th Congressional District: "Does she think we're that stupid?"

What's next for Lauren Boebert after announcing change of districts
What's next for Lauren Boebert after announcing change of districts 02:25

Rep. Lauren Boebert, a Republican who represents Colorado's 3rd Congressional District, thinks she might be a good candidate for Colorado's heavily conservative 4th Congressional District. On Wednesday she announced her intention to abandon her run to retain her seat in CD3 to run for the open CD4 seat. Her competitors already running in the Republican primary for that seat in 2024 say her projection isn't necessarily true.

Rep. Lauren Boebert CBS

The Congressional seat will become vacant, as Rep. Ken Buck, a Republican, says he does not plan to run for another term.

"I work to earn the trust of grassroots conservative voters in the 4th District to represent them in 2025," Boebert wrote on Facebook.

"This is unprecedented," said CBS News Colorado political analyst Dick Wadhams. The Republican says it's clear why Boebert decided to jump into the race.

"She knew she was probably going to lose in the 3rd Congressional District," said Wadhams. Boebert nearly lost her run for re-election in CD3 in 2022.

Dick Wadhams CBS

The CD4 primary race was already crowded, with six people running. Wadhams says Boebert becoming the seventh won't likely push candidates out of the race.

"But it will cause some real friction," said Wadhams.

He says Boebert will have a major hurdle to overcome to win the nomination: winning over voters in a district she doesn't currently live in. Boebert currently lives in western Colorado. 

"People don't like people moving into a district just to run," said Wadhams.

It is a vulnerability her Republican primary competitors are already pouncing on.

Former state Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg, of Sterling, released a statement saying:

"I look forward to welcoming Lauren to the fourth district and representing her in Congress. I've lived, worked, and raised my family here and I'm blessed to have always called Eastern Colorado home. The fourth district is my home, and I'm going to continue to work hard to represent the principled conservative values of everyone who lives here just as I have always done."

Jerry Sonnenberg

State Rep. Richard Holtorf, of Akron, said, "seat shopping isn't something voters look kindly on."

He added, "Does she think we're that stupid? Does she think we're going to be fooled by this trickery?"

Holtorf says the Eastern Plains are much different than the Western Slope Boebert currently represents, and he is the right candidate to represent his home, not her.

"I'm a third-generation cattle rancher, cattle feeder and farmer out here," said Holtorf. "So, our roots run deep here and you know what? I'm (part of) the fabric of this part of the state."

Richard Holtorf

Former state Sen. Ted Harvey, of Highlands Ranch, says Boebert is just carpetbagging.

"It's sad, first and foremost, because she ran to say that she wasn't going to be a career politician," said Harvey. "She has lost the confidence of the conservative voters in the 3rd Congressional District, so much so that she was probably going to lose that seat. And so now she's decided to cling to power and continue to be a career politician."

He thinks he can represent Colorado conservatives better.

Ted Harvey CBS

"We want to have a candidate that will represent our small government, lower taxes, conservative values that believe in having sovereign borders and believe in making sure that our government is serving us and representing us but not trying to be our boss," said Harvey.

While it's too early to say how this primary race might turn out, Wadhams says one thing is for sure.

"In a year that was already going to have a very competitive, aggressive primary in the 4th district, it has now gotten terribly interesting," said Wadhams.

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