Frisch, Boebert in dead heat for 3rd Congressional District as recount looms

Rick Carroll
The Aspen Times
Lauren Boebert, la noche de las elecciones en el Warehouse 2560 en Grand Junction.
Christopher Tomlinson/Grand Junction Daily Sentinel

Former Aspen City Councilman Adam Frisch was barely ahead of U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Silt, in the battle for Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District as returns trickled in Wednesday but with no definitive outcome.

Frisch, a Democrat, was leading the freshman congresswoman by 64 votes as of 8 p.m. Wednesday, according the Colorado secretary of state.

An automatic recount will be triggered if Frisch and Boebert are within one half a percent of each other. Frisch had 50.01% of the vote to Boebert’s 49.99%. Frisch’s vote total stood at 156,746 to Boebert’s 156,682. Those tallies were taken from 98% of the votes that had been counted, according to The Associated Press.

Aspen’s Adam Frisch, running against incumbent Lauren Boebert in Colorado District 3, talks to his supporters at a watch party at Belly Up Aspen on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, in Aspen. (Austin Colbert/The Aspen Times)
Austin Colbert/The Aspen Times

A Frisch win would be a monumental upset against predictions made by such media outlets as The New York Times, Politico and, The Cook Political Report — all three of which forecast a Boebert win in a traditionally red district, which was re-aligned in 2001.

“Freshman GOP Rep. Lauren Boebert is a lightning rod for controversy, but her district got more Republican in redistricting. Democrat Adam Frisch will be able to raise a lot of money, if nothing else,” Politico noted in August.

Frisch expressed confidence throughout the campaign that he could pull off a dark-horse win with a centrist approach in his run against the polarizing Boebert, an election-denier who received Donald Trump’s endorsement in her June primary win over state Sen. Don Coram.

“My goal was this could be an emotional win for the country,” Frisch said Tuesday night during his campaign watch party at the Belly Up nightclub in Aspen. “There are a lot of extremists in the House, including on the other side, but, in today’s politics, sadly, if the assumption is if you’re really loud, you must be really electorally strong.”

His campaign was emailing supporters as recently at 4 p.m. Wednesday, preparing to start curing ballots that could not be counted, whether due to an unreadable voter signature or damaged ballot, for example.

“We need to cure ballots to ensure every single vote is counted, which means we need to build our resources to cover these costs,” said the email.

Unofficial returns showed Frisch capturing the popular vote in 13 of the 27 counties in the 3rd Congressional District, and Boebert taking 14, including the district’s largest population center — Grand Junction.

Unofficial results showed Frisch winning in Eagle (2,916 votes, 71.7% of the ballots cast) and Pitkin (7,364 votes, 78.2%) counties, and also received more votes (13,375 votes, 56.38%) than Boebert did in her home county of Garfield. Boebert scored a big win in Mesa County (41,465 votes, 57.75%). Frisch was leading in Pueblo County, the district’s second largest population center behind Mesa, with 30,533 votes, or 53.55%.

As of Sept. 20, the 3rd Congressional District had 114,751 registered Democrat voters, 149,462 Republican voters, 211,236 unaffiliated voters, and 8,797 registered members of minor parties, according to the Colorado Independent Redistricting Commission.

Boebert’s campaign did not immediately respond to messages seeking comment Wednesday, and Frisch said he wouldn’t have a comment until the final, unofficial results were counted.

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