Rep. Lauren Boebert is facing scrutiny after a recent episode at an off-Broadway performance of Beetlejuice. The first reported details involved her getting loud, giving the finger to an usher, and being kicked out of the building. She also was accused of breaking the rules on indoor vaping, a claim she initially denied.
Things got worse when security camera footage was released showing her and her new boyfriend (Boebert is currently separated from her husband but still married) fondling each other while surrounded by other attendees. The video also confirmed she was vaping, something she would later admit to when she issued the following apology.
The past few days have been difficult and humbling, and I’m truly sorry for the unwanted attention my Sunday evening in Denver has brought to the community. While none of my actions or words as a private citizen that night were intended to be malicious or meant to cause harm, the reality is they did and I regret that.
There’s no perfect blueprint for going through a public and difficult divorce, which over the past few months has made for a challenging personal time for me and my entire family. I’ve tried to handle it with strength and grace as best I can, but I simply fell short of my values on Sunday. That’s unacceptable and I’m sorry.
Whether it was the excitement of seeing a much-anticipated production or the natural anxiety of being in a new environment, I genuinely did not recall vaping that evening when I discussed the night’s events with my campaign team while confirming my enthusiasm for the musical. Regardless of my belief, it’s clear now that was not accurate; it was not my or my campaign’s intention to mislead, but we do understand the nature of how this looks. We know we will have to work to earn your trust back and it may not happen overnight, but we will do it.
I’m deeply thankful to those in the 3rd District who have defended me and reached out this week and offered grace and support when I needed it the most. I’ve learned some humbling lessons these past few days but I vow moving forward, I will make you proud.
Look, I’ll just level with you. Do I find Boebert’s behavior inappropriate? Sure. Is it a major political scandal compared to some of the other stuff we’ve seen recently? Not really. After all, we just had a full news cycle of Democrats defending a Virginia state senate candidate for uploading her own porn videos onto the internet while trying to trick hotel workers into being in them. Clearly, the moral standards in politics are very low.
To make that argument in Boebert’s favor misses the point, though. Congressional races do not happen in a vacuum. Each district is different, and because of that, each district demands a different approach in order to win it. To offer some context, Boebert represents a district in Colorado that has been trending blue (at least with her representing it). She won it in 2022 by just 546 votes.
That brings me to the real problem with Boebert’s conduct. It’s not that it’s overly egregious compared to other screw-ups in politics. It’s that it’s overly egregious when considering the realities of her district. After barely skating by in 2022, she needed to come out and show voters a different side of her, presenting as a serious individual who can be trusted to mature as a representative. Instead, she’s taken to getting kicked out of Beetlejuice after getting frisky in public with a guy who isn’t her husband.
Republicans can’t afford these kinds of missteps when the margin in the House of Representatives is only four seats. She has to reset and take a different path, and quickly. I understand that Boebert has a penchant for seeking national notoriety as opposed to just representing her district, but she needs to realize that all goes away if she loses. How many people still talk about Cameron Cawthorne? Because she’s currently staring at the same fate.
Boebert is going through some stuff right now with her family. I understand that, and I’m not suggesting she doesn’t deserve some grace on that front. People make mistakes when they are under a lot of stress. But politics waits for no one, and if she doesn’t get control of her life and tone things down so she can instead start focusing on her district, she’s not going to be around much longer. Not only would that be bad for her career, but it’d be bad for GOP attempts to retain at least one branch of government going into a very murky 2024 political environment.