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The two members of Congress who represent Eagle County in Washington – Republican Lauren Boebert, (western two-thirds of the county) and Democrat Joe Neguse (eastern third) – have responded in remarkably different ways to Wednesday’s deadly Capitol Hill insurrection by Trump supporters. And Eagle County officials have taken notice.
Just days into her term, Boebert has gained even more national notoriety for inflammatory tweets before and during the violent attack meant to stop the Constitutionally mandated counting of electoral votes in the free and fair Nov. 3 election of Democratic President-elect Joe Biden. The attack merely delayed the largely ceremonial count, with Boebert returning hours after five people were fatally injured in order to object to the legally conducted election.
“As a candidate, fanning the flames of insurrection with spurious claims of election fraud was grossly irresponsible, and yet your right granted by the Constitution,” the Eagle County commissioners wrote in open letter to Boebert on Monday. “As an official fairly elected to office, to then assume and exercise an authority not granted to you by that same constitution is neither legal, ethical, or moral.”
Numerous state and national politicians, mostly Democrats, are calling on Boebert to resign her office, especially after she appeared to send a tweet telling her insurrectionist followers the location of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after she was whisked from the chamber and the mob closed in. Colorado Republican Party Chair and U.S. Rep. Ken Buck is also calling on Boebert to tone down her rhetoric.
Speaker Pelosi on Monday gave Vice President Mike Pence, who presided over Wednesday’s Electoral College certification as the president of the Senate, 24 hours to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove President Donald Trump from office or else she promised to move forward with an article of impeachment.
That article, introduced Monday, charges Trump with “inciting violence against the government of the United States” when he told thousands of his followers earlier in the day Wednesday to head to the Capitol to “fight” for his lame-duck presidency. Trump has lost more than 50 court cases falsely alleging election fraud in what was a decisive 7-million-vote victory for Biden.
Pence, who spent the holidays in Vail before heading back to Washington, is reportedly opposed to removing Trump so soon before Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20, but law enforcement and intelligence officials are worried the president and his followers, such as Boebert, could stoke more unrest over the next 10 days. Members of Wednesday’s mob chanted “hang Mike Pence.”
Boebert, in an interview last May with RealVail.com, said the Second Amendment is not about sport shooting or hunting but about taking on a tyrannical government. Now she wants to be able to carry her Glock 9mm on the House floor. Boebert’s staff months ago stopped responding to requests for additional comment from RealVail.com.
Neguse, who played a leadership role in countering false Republican claims of a rigged election, was one of the first lawmakers to call for Trump’s removal from office. Now the Lafayette Democrat is demanding more accountability from law enforcement on what went wrong on Wednesday and what will be done to guard against more violence by Trump supporters.
Here’s a press release from Neguse that his office issued on Monday:
Washington D.C.—This morning, Congressman Joe Neguse and Congresswoman Veronica Escobar, both members of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, sent a letter to agency heads at the Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation seeking a public briefing to discuss last week’s attack on the United States Capitol. Wednesday’s attack is the most significant attack on a branch of the United States government since British forces set fire to the U.S. Capitol in 1814 and the public has yet to hear from federal law enforcement authorities regarding an official account of the events of that day.
“Wednesday’s armed insurrection led to multiple deaths, put Members of Congress, staff, and reporters at risk, and resulted in vandalized and damaged offices,” said Congressman Joe Neguse.“It’s been several days and we have yet to hear from federal law enforcement officials with an official account of the day. Their absenceis wholly unacceptable. After an attack of this scale, the American public deserve to be well informed and provided with the facts.”
“It has been five days since the American public witnessed a failed coup attempt unfold before their eyes and our nation has yet to hear from federal law enforcement authorities,” said Congresswoman Escobar. “This is an unacceptable response to an attack on the United States of America that resulted in five deaths, endangered the legislative branch of government, and violated our democracy in an unprecedented way. The Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security, and the FBI must immediately come forward and provide Americans with information and the facts.”
Read the full letter here.