Republican congressional candidate Lauren Boebert links U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, the five-term incumbent she's challenging in Colorado's June 30 primary, with one of the most prominent progressive women in Congress in a TV ad that launched Wednesday.
Tipton is "teaming up with AOC and her 'Squad' to give Boulder a bailout," the 30-second ad says, referring to Tipton's co-sponsorship of a coronavirus relief bill also supported by U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, who goes by AOC, and the group of young, progressive Democrats she leads known as "The Squad."
"Say no to Tipton's Boulder bailout. Say no to Scott Tipton," the ad says.
The ad is airing on the Fox News Channel in Pueblo and Grand Junction, Boebert told Colorado Politics. She said the campaign plans to increase the buy as fundraising permits.
Boebert is referring to a House resolution sponsored by U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse, a Lafayette Democrat who represents Boulder in Colorado's 2nd Congressional District, that would allow federal coronavirus relief funds to go to local governments with populations under 500,000 — in other words, every local government in Tipton's largely rural 3rd Congressional District.
It's been incorporated into a massive assistance package passed by the House that awaits action by the Senate.
Boebert told Colorado Politics that it's a "false narrative" that Boulder needs to be bailed out in order to help communities in the 3rd CD, none of which currently qualify for federal aid because their populations fall below the threshold set by an earlier bill.
"Craft better legislation. Speak up. Send better bills to the President. But stop wasting taxpayer dollars on liberal bailouts," Boebert said in a text message.
Asked whether she supports making COVID-19 relief funds available to local governments in the district, she answered: "We are not another government bailout away from economic success. We need to open up America."
The owner of Shooters Grill in Rifle, Boebert scored top line on the primary ballot with a win at the congressional district assembly. Her campaign is releasing the ad days before ballots start going in the mail to voters on Monday.
Tipton has survived primary challengers twice since he was first elected in 2010 to represent the sprawling district, which covers most of the Western Slope, Pueblo County and the San Luis Valley.
Two Democrats are also running for the seat — former state Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush, D-Steamboat Springs, who ran unsuccessfully against Tipton in 2018, and former seafood executive James Iacino.
UPDATED: This story has been updated to clarify that if the 3rd Congressional District doesn't have any local government with a population greater than 500,000, that means the same thing as saying the 3rd CD only has local governments with populations under 500,000.