Under Colorado’s somewhat confusing new quasi-open primary election system approved by voters in 2018, yesterday was the deadline for registered Republicans and Democrats to change their party affiliation in advance of the upcoming June 28th primary election. Under Colorado law, unaffiliated voters receive both Republican and Democratic primary ballots, and have the option to vote either (but obviously not both). A faction of Republicans unsuccessfully led by the infamous January 6th coup mastermind John Eastman himself tried to thwart unaffiliated participation in the GOP primary through both a vote of the party central committee and a rejected lawsuit.
In the CD-5 GOP primary, challenger Rep. Dave Williams has supported attempts to block unaffiliated voters from participating in Republican primaries, correctly figuring that unaffiliated voters would fall in behind incumbent Rep. Doug Lamborn rather than allow the polarizing and immoderate Williams to join the far-right freakshow in Congress led by Marjorie Taylor Greene, Matt Gaetz, and Colorado’s own walking, talking optical nightmare Rep. Lauren Boebert.
In Boebert’s CD-3 GOP primary against state Sen. Don Coram, the unaffiliated dynamic is flipped. Unaffiliated voters in that primary are expected to turn out in large numbers against the incumbent due to the same fringe revulsion that could scare unaffiliated CD-5 voters back to Lamborn. And as Colorado Public Radio reports, there’s another factor to consider–several thousand Democrats who appear to have switch their affiliation to vote in the Republican CD-3 primary:
In total, the Democratic Party’s voter rolls in the district shrunk by about 3,700 people, or about 2.7%, from February through May, according to an analysis by CPR News. At the same time, the district saw unusual growth in its unaffiliated voter population. One political scientist, Seth Masket, described the findings as “stunning.”
It’s impossible to say how many of those switchers are hoping to influence the Boebert-Coram primary. Some may be displeased with the Democrats, or may have simply moved away. But reporters have heard from numerous liberal and unaffiliated voters in the district who want to dump Boebert.
And, statistically, something unusual is happening. No other Colorado district has seen a comparable change over the last few months; neither party has lost more than a few hundred voters in other areas in that time.
Now before anybody gets carried away:
The party-switchers are just a small portion of the overall electorate. Even if all 3,600 former Democrats planned to vote for Coram, they would make up less than 1 percent of registered voters. [Pols emphasis] For comparison, Boebert won her first primary by nearly 10,000 votes in 2020.
Although the apparent switch by fewer than 1% of the total expected vote from Democratic to unaffiliated will be the logical target for Boebert’s wrath in the event she does lose on June 28th to Coram, the far larger problem Boebert faces is with the unaffiliated voters who make up a plurality in the district. Thousands of unaffiliated voters who in 2020 sat out the race entirely having no idea the threat posed by Boebert will be returning their ballots this time.
Make no mistake: if Boebert determines that she has a real risk of being defeated by a combination of an unaffiliated uprising and displeasure from Republicans sick of Boebert’s high-visibility low-productivity representation, she’s going to blame the 3,600 Democrats whether it’s justified or not. Eastman’s failed lawsuit suddenly becomes a crisis of second-guessing and a pretext for Boebert to resist. Given the lack of respect Boebert has already shown for elections whose results she didn’t like, calling shenanigans over a few thousand Democrats doing something entirely within the law seems disturbingly likely.
Hopefully Boebert doesn’t incite her own mini-January 6th.
She'll hole up in the Shooters Grill until the tainted pork sliders run out!
LOL !!! 3600 is a good start towards 10,000!!!!
"She'll hole up in the Shooters Grill until the tainted pork sliders run out!"
That, or until they run out of Imodium.
I think back to 2008 when Musty Marilyn Musgrave was rumored to be holed up in a Motel Six in Fort Morgan refusing to concede to Betsy Markey.
Was she ever seen or heard from again? I seem to remember that she cleared out her office in the dark of night and vanished.
Of course I'm no conspiracy theorist, but what's-her-name's margin of victory in the 2020 primary was only slightly larger than her margin in Mesa County alone, which surely through some type of extrapolation points to election shenanigans from the County Clerk. Therefore, and this is scientific, someone else running the 2022 primary in Mesa might hurt her more than crossover Ds.
Peters was doing shenanigans ( like not counting 500 ballots) way before the Big Lie and PillowMan came along.
Boebert would blame the rainbow brite army but I doubt she will have to because republicans are that worked up to elect her all over again. I would also imagine, that given how petty we have seen the trumpers are, that she will try to ruin him financially or politically after the election.
What is notable is the rather static nature of party enrolments
CPR’s analysis only looked at voter registrations from February through May, 2022. Looking at trends since November 1, 2020 is a bit different.
I’m overlooking the re-apportionment differences that have made the district show with more Republican votes in the 8 state-wide elections the Independent Commissions considered. And I’m looking only at Active Registered Voters.
State-wide, then in CD 3, THEN NET PERCENTAGE DIFFERENCE
Short summary — CO3 had Democrats and Republicans active registrations drop [as usual with list cleanup]. More Democrats than Republicans in both absolute numbers and as a percentage of registrations. CO3 Unaffiliated registrations grew, but not as much as the state as a whole.
Until votes come in, I think we won’t really be able to tell if people left Democrats to go vote against Rep. Boebert or Republicans left because they realized their party had changed.
I know of a small group of women in Grand Junction who are organizing an effort to change their registration and vote for Don Coram. All low key. they really hate Qbert.