Redistricting: A Dem attempt to defeat Lauren Boebert

The Colorado Independent Redistricting Commissions, the first independent commission of its kind in the country, were approved by Colorado voters as Amendments Y and Z in 2018.  They are now in the process of redrawing Colorado's Congressional and Legislative Districts for the 2022 election.

The twelve-member commission recently held a public hearing in Durango to take comments on their "preliminary" district maps for the Third Congressional District, currently held by Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) and two state legislative districts.    

With Boebert on the ballot in 2022, there has been more than usual partisan opposition to her based on a similar pathology to the irrational animosity that local Democrats continue to express for former president Donald Trump.  

Opposition from her "progressive" constituents began with Boebert daring to wear a Glock semi-automatic on her hip, even within the hallowed halls of Congress.  If that were not enough to arouse vehement constituent passions, Boebert has accrued what Democrats believe to be an equally controversial voting record.  

Currently, Boebert has been photographed on the House floor, on the steps of the Capitol, and participating in other congressional responsibilities without her Glock.  That has not softened the opinion of her constituents to use the op-ed page of the Durango Herald as a revolving door of malicious attacks.

Given the reality that the Third Congressional District in Colorado is generally considered a "safe-leaning" Republican seat, the Dems have come up with an admittedly creative response to Boebert's frontrunner status as the Dems tacitly admit they cannot beat her on the issues.  Since this is a year to reapportion and reconfigure congressional district lines based on the 2020 Census results, their scheme is to alter the geographic configuration of the Third to better suit the potential for a Democrat victory. 

So rather than spend millions on a sure loser, the Dems have constructed their own Competitive Map, courtesy of former (twice defeated) congressional candidate Diane Mitsch Bush and James Iacino (another congressionally defeated Democrat), to convince the Commission to redesign its "preliminary" map.  

As the hearing got underway, there was nothing spontaneous as one Democratic witness after another stepped up to oppose the commission's "preliminary" map, citing its non-competitive nature, its lack of aligning "communities of interest," and suggesting that the commission had "failed in its mission."

Fourteen opponents (out of 45 speakers) introduced their partisan version of the Third District map throughout the day without revealing their special interest as Democrats or giving Mitsch-Bush and Iacino any credit for its creation.  Without specifically explaining the geographic differences, the rationale for the competitive map focused on the merits of consolidating all federal lands in western Colorado into one congressional district. 

Concealing their true intention in creating a new Third Congressional District was the glaring omission that the "competitive" map dramatically increased its Democratic votes and likewise decreased its Republican votes that resulted in the geographic switcheroo to favor a Dem candidate. 

For instance, the competitive map suggested eliminating Teller, Fremont, and Park Counties from the commission's "preliminary" map, which would result in the elimination of 26,503 Republicans, 9,937 Democrats, and 26,335 independent votes (per Colorado secretary of state voter party enrollment stats, July 2021).  

At the same time, the Democrat-sponsored competitive map would add large swaths from heavily Democrat Larimer and Boulder Counties, a piece of west Jefferson County, and all of Gilpin County.  In addition, the Dem map included the addition of Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande, and Saguache Counties, adding 10,841 Democrats, 8,900 Republicans, and 7,427 Independents.  

There can be no doubt that the sum of all these topographical machinations was drawn up with the thinly veiled political objective to geographically defeat Boebert before Election Day.

With a domineering "my way or the highway" approach and aggressive in their ideology, the Dems have revealed themselves to live in a different dimension of reality, one that supports unfairness, censorship, and repression.  They are out to get Boebert, and yet, unless the Commission flips the maps, they will be forced to abide by what was once a tried and true democratic election process, where the highest vote is declared the winner.  

Renee Parsons served on the ACLU's Florida State Board of Directors and as president of the ACLU Treasure Coast Chapter.  She has been an elected public official in Colorado, staff in the Office of the Colorado State Public Defender, an environmental lobbyist for Friends of the Earth, and a staff member of the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington DC. She can be found at

Image: Gage Skidmore.

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