Steamboat native says Boebert has forgotten about blue portion of the state

Sam Ogden, 25, was raised in Steamboat Springs and works as a buyer at Off The Beaten Path bookstore and café. (Photo by John F. Russell)

Editor’s note: This story is part of an ongoing series highlighting voters throughout Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District. Through the month of May, The Aspen Times, the Glenwood Springs Post Independent, Steamboat Pilot & Today, Craig Press and Vail Daily will be running stories highlighting Democrat and Republican voters in our communities.

Sam Ogden registered as a Democrat as soon as he was old enough to vote. His first ballot was cast in the 2014 mid-term elections, the year Republicans grew their majority in the U.S. House of Representatives to the largest margin since the Great Depression.

Born and raised in Steamboat Springs, Ogden, 25, went to Colorado State University for history and political science. He now lives back with his parents to save money and works as a Colorado Parks and Wildlife summer park ranger and at a bookstore in downtown Steamboat.

He doesn’t always agree with the Democratic Party — Ogden said he is more of a hawk when it comes to war and has more conservative views on things like drug policy. But on about 90% of other issues, Ogden is on board.

Politics in America are very divisive, Ogden said, but this isn’t unprecedented territory for the country.

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“I really wish we could all — it is a cliché — but turn down the temperature and start talking with each other,” Ogden said. “I also think that we are dealing with some really important issues. … It is understandable that people are getting so upset because we are dealing with some really important things.”

Primaries are at least partly to blame for the divisiveness because people with the most partisan beliefs generally dominate them, Ogden said. He feels Colorado’s open primary system will help address this because more people, particularly unaffiliated voters, can vote in primaries.

“Then we got Boebert, so it didn’t work too well,” Ogden said.

Ogden is not a fan of CD-3 Rep. Lauren Boebert. When she said she would vote to challenge the election prior to Jan. 6, Ogden said he contacted the representative to remind her she represents people who voted for Joe Biden, too.

“I haven’t heard back. Maybe she hasn’t opened it yet,” Ogden said.

Keeping track of politicians around the state is important for Ogden, and he follows Boebert pretty closely. Because of her natural resources committee assignment, Ogden said she is in a good position to do some good for the public lands, which dominate much of the land in the district.

But most of what he hears about Boebert isn’t benefiting the district in his mind.

“It seems like she used her persona to get all of this national attention, and then, she hasn’t actually done anything with it yet,” Ogden said. “She is very focused on the red part of the district and has forgotten it is the biggest district in the state.”

Because of the nature of the Western Slope, Ogden said he doesn’t feel like it should be represented by someone who is “super blue.” Instead, it should be someone closer to the middle that can effectively represent ranching and other interests of the district. He would like to see a moderate Democrat take on Boebert.

“I don’t believe I have missed an election yet, and I don’t plan to,” Ogden said. “I am sure there is some universe where I could vote for her, but I can’t picture what that reality is.”

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