As the Pueblo Chieftain’s newest political reporter Lacey Latch reports, yesterday was another chance for GOP freshman Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert to win hearts and minds in what’s set to remain the foremost Democratic stronghold in the Third Congressional District–in particular Pueblo’s blue-collar working-class flavor of Democratic politics that a few deft Republicans have been able to make some inroads with.
Speaking before what could have been a friendly audience at Pueblo’s defiant Columbus Day celebration–Pueblo’s proud Italian-American community having pointedly not gone along with the rebranding of the holiday by the rest of Colorado as Frances Xavier Cabrini Day–Boebert made it painfully obvious she is not one of those smart Pee-ebla Republicans:
The crowd was unwavering in its support for preserving the legacy of Italian-Americans and almost all of the speakers stuck to that messaging.
It was when Boebert took the stage that the event’s message changed. After a few words about the importance of the federal holiday, the Republican congresswoman reverted to the messaging that she uses on the campaign trail — none of which was about Columbus, Italians or Indigenous Americans.
Instead, Boebert touched on many conservative talking points throughout her speech including socialism in China, border issues in Texas and masks in public schools…
“I didn’t know it was going to be like this. I come to celebrate my heritage, my culture, being Italian,” said Pattyanne Corsentino. “I don’t come for this s—.” [Pols emphasis]
Colorado Newsline’s Sara Wilson:
Boebert wavered from Columbus within minutes to hit on her usual stump speech talking points: the immigration “crisis” at the border, anti-Biden rhetoric and COVID-19 restrictions. Boebert has not held an in-person town hall in Pueblo since taking office but has appeared at a few private events, such as a fundraising dinner for the local Republican Party…
Patty Corsentino was audibly upset about the congresswoman’s remarks and said the event felt more somber than in past years. Corsentino, whose family helped construct the monument and who wants it to remain in place, said that bringing Boebert in detracts from the reason to remember Columbus.
“I’m disappointed because this shouldn’t be politicized,” she said. “It’s about the culture and the history.” Corsentino said she comes from a family of Democrats and did not vote for Boebert.
If Boebert had been able to show enough restraint to keep to her speech focused on praising the local Italian-American community and the (mostly false) hagiography about Christopher Columbus’ voyage, it might have had a very different effect on the audience. Not every speech given by a member of Congress has to be or should be a political blowtorch. But with Boebert, full partisan bombast is her only gear–to the extent that we’d fully expect the same vitriolic red meat in a speech dedicating a new Post Office.
No swing voters are won this way, folks.