Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., declared herself the winner of her congressional race on Thursday, despite the fact that the election is still too close to call.
Boebert is in a surprisingly close race with Democratic challenger Adam Frisch, who led the race on election night. As votes continued to be counted, Boebert took a slim lead over the Democrat last week, but Frisch cut her lead from 1,122 votes to 551 votes on Thursday as more ballots were cured and counted.
According to the Associated Press, the race is still too close to call. Boebert’s slim lead is well within the 0.5% threshold required by Colorado law to trigger an automatic recount, and the AP is not expected to call the race until the recount is completed. According to state law, the mandatory recount must be completed within 35 days of the election, which is December 13.
But that didn’t stop Boebert, who was unusually quiet as she trailed in the race, from declaring victory too soon.
“We won!” Boebert posted a video to Twitter. “You can be certain of two things come January,” she said: “I will be sworn in for my second term as your congresswoman, and Republicans will finally be able to turn Pelosi’s house back into the People’s House.”
Not only is the race headed for a recount, but “two counties have yet to send their final vote tallies,” according to Colorado Sun editor Larry Rickman.
Nonetheless, it would be “extremely rare for a lead of that size to be overturned in a recount,” according to Dave Wasserman of the Cook Political Report.
Frisch, a businessman and former Aspen city councilman, told the Associated Press that he would not be surprised if he won, but he also admitted that he could lose.
Frisch filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission on Thursday to run in the district again in 2024, implying that a rematch is possible even if Boebert’s lead holds.
Frisch framed his entire campaign as a “candidate to defeat Lauren Boebert,” referring to his Republican opponent’s antics.
According to his campaign website, “Lauren Boebert is an anti-American, anti-Colorado show pony who can’t tell right from wrong.” “I’ve spent my professional life as a successful businessman. Now I’m running for Congress to reduce inflation and spur local economic growth and job creation. I’ll prioritize Colorado and keep America strong.”
Boebert, a gun-toting business owner whose Shooters Grill restaurant was recently closed, has made headlines as part of the so-called “MAGA Squad,” which also includes Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., and outgoing Rep. Madison Cawthorn, R-N.C., who lost his re-election bid in the GOP primary.
Boebert promoted election conspiracy theories on multiple occasions and was widely chastised for inciting Trump supporters ahead of the Capitol riot and later tweeting House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s, D-Calif., location during the attack. Despite clashes with Capitol Police, she insisted on bringing her gun to the Capitol.
She was also investigated in Colorado for using campaign funds to pay her rent and utility bills, as well as for receiving an unusually large $22,259 in mileage reimbursements from her campaign.
While Boebert has no legislative accomplishments to show for her first term, she has faced criticism from Democrats for making Islamophobic remarks about Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn.
“You know, we’re leaving the Capitol and heading back to my office, and we get in an elevator, and I see a Capitol Police officer running to the elevator,” Boebert told supporters last year at an event. “I see worry on his face, and he’s reaching, and the door is closing, as if I can’t open it, as if what’s happening. I look to my left and see her. Omar, Ilhan ‘Well, she doesn’t have a backpack, so we should be fine,’ I said.”
She later interrupted President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address while he was speaking about his son Beau, who died of cancer in 2015.
During a religious service this summer, Boebert appeared to embrace Christian nationalism.