Saturday, September 25, 2021

Lauren Boebert Redux, Ridiculous

I wrote once before about Colorado freshman representative Lauren Boebert, one of the many Republican members of Congress I never would have believed could be elected. Aside from all the known stuff about how bad she is (gun-loving, QAnon-flirting), there was news a while back that she had committed a bunch of financial campaign violations. And now there's more.

And I don't mean minor violations. These were direct, I'm-paying-myself-from-campaign-money violations. A couple of days ago, Chris Hayes had reporter Ian Silverii from the Denver Post on his show to talk about it, which reminds us all of the value of local reporters.

Here's the story. Boebert's bar/restaurant — charmingly called Shooters Grill, where the employees are encouraged to open-carry their weapons — was $19,000 in debt to the county for not paying its unemployment taxes. Right around the same time, lo and behold, Boebert the candidate filed for $20,000-worth of mileage charges to her campaign, then paid off the debt.

Doing the math on that amount of mileage shows that it's equal to 1.5 times the earth's circumference. And this was at a time when the candidate had only one public campaign event during the four-month filing period. 

More recently, it has been reported, based on her FEC filings, that Boebert directly paid rent and utility expenses for the restaurant with campaign funds!

Hayes: ...they're just recording this in their public campaign disclosures, that they're using campaign money this way?

Silverii: Yeah, they do it quite a bit after those reports are due, too, so it's pretty weird. They don't actually file when those reports are due, and then several months later they file some kind of weird amended report.

Silverii said that Boebert's restaurant generally is a failing business, not a prosperous one that happened to make a mistake. It lost about $140,000 in 2019 and $225,000 in 2020. She's a grifter, in this for the exposure and how she can turn that into money.

Silverii also said that she will not talk to any of the local media in Colorado, like the Grand Junction paper, let alone the Denver Post... only to OAN and NewsMax (he didn't mention Fox News). 

The gutting of local newspapers and feeding of right-wing alternative media are clearly part of this problem.


Back in January, Silverii wrote an opinion piece for the Post called Lauren Boebert Should Resign or Be Expelled, based solely on her actions related to January 6. I don't know what the legal remedies are for her clear violations within election law, but they equal theft or fraud, in my view.

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