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Lauren Boebert says she won't seek GOP nomination for special election to replace Ken Buck

Instead, Republican plans to concentrate on winning primary for Buck's Colorado seat

U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert said Wednesday that she won't seek the Republican nomination for the special election to replace U.S. Rep. Ken Buck. Instead, Boebert said she plans to put her efforts into winning the simultaneous GOP primary election for Buck's seat.

In a statement, Boebert tore into her fellow Republican after Buck announced on Tuesday that he will step down from the 4th Congressional District seat at the end of next week, triggering a special election to serve out the remainder of his term.

Citing the narrow available window under state law, Gov. Jared Polis on Tuesday scheduled the special election for June 25, the same day as the congressional primary, when voters will nominate candidates to the November election.

Buck announced last fall that he wouldn't seek reelection to a sixth term in Congress, drawing a crowded field of hopefuls in the heavily Republican district, which covers Douglas County and the Eastern Plains. Among the GOP candidates is Boebert, who announced late last year that she would run in Buck's district, instead of the more competitive 3rd Congressional District seat she represents.

Calling Buck's surprise resignation a "gift to the Uniparty," Boebert suggested that Buck's timing was meant to box her out.

"The establishment concocted a swampy backroom deal to try to rig an election I’m winning by 25 points," Boebert said, referring to a recent Kaplan Strategies poll that showed her leading some of the other Republicans running in the primary.

"Forcing an unnecessary Special Election on the same day as the Primary Election will confuse voters, result in a lame duck Congressman on day one, and leave the 4th District with no representation for more than three months. The 4th District deserves better," she said.

Boebert also noted that, if she secured the nomination for the special election and went on to win the June vote, she would have to step down from the seat she currently represents — creating another vacancy and necessitating another special election, which couldn't be held until sometime in September.

Buck's resignation leaves House Republicans with a narrow 218-213 majority, meaning the GOP can only afford to lose two Republican lawmakers on party-line votes.

"I will not further imperil the already very slim House Republican majority by resigning my current seat and will continue to deliver on my constituents’ priorities, while also working hard to earn the votes of the people of Colorado’s 4th District who have made clear they are hungry for a real conservative," Boebert said.

While state Republicans have yet to announce the procedure the party will use to designate a nominee for the special election, it's likely the GOP candidate will be chosen by a committee of party insiders who reside in the 4th CD. Boebert would likely face an uphill battle winning the nomination after only recently moving into the district from the Western Slope.

Other Republican candidates for the seat have said Tuesday they intend to seek the nomination for the special election, including former state Sens. Jerry Sonnenberg and Ted Harvey, state Reps. Richard Holtorf and nonprofit founder Deborah Flora.

The Democrats, meanwhile, are also firming up their process to nominate a candidate for the special election, with at least four candidates expected to compete for their party's nod.

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