As of Wednesday afternoon, Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, which spans 27 counties, was still waiting to find out who would represent it in Congress.

Trump-backed incumbent Republican Rep. Lauren Boebert had edged about 1,100 votes ahead of Democratic challenger Adam Frisch, a far cry from national forecasts for a shoo-in second term.

Why We Wrote This

A Trump-backed incumbent finds herself in a tighter race than expected. As election workers persevere, the nail-biter has demanded patience from a far-flung voter base.

“Every day I check the tally,” says Frisch voter Laura Van Deusen, a middle school math teacher in Rifle. “It doesn’t sound like [Ms. Boebert] wants to listen to the other side,” she says, whereas Mr. Frisch “really talked about working on both sides of the aisle.

Boebert voter Gene Trujillo, on the other hand, has resisted constant checking of the count, he says, as it kind of weighs heavy on the heart sometimes.” The retired railroad worker in Walsenburg says Ms. Boebert “comes across as knowing what’s right and wrong, and that pleases me.”

Colorado “often has been thought of in the not-so-distant past as a purple state,” says Justin Gollob, a political scientist at Colorado Mesa University. But given recent electoral trends, he adds, “it’s hard to come to a conclusion other than this is a state that’s trending blue with deep-red regional pockets.”

A district spanning 27 counties defies generalizations. In the past week, Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District has demonstrated that.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Trump-backed incumbent Republican Rep. Lauren Boebert had edged about 1,100 votes ahead of Democratic challenger Adam Frisch, a far cry from national forecasts for a shoo-in second term. Today is the deadline for Colorado clerks to receive military and overseas ballots, as well as ballots that needed “curing” over signature issues. It remains unclear when the count will conclude – and whether a recount (state-ordered or otherwise requested by a campaign) awaits. 

Amid the uncertainty since Nov. 8, interviews with voters make at least one thing clear: The race has united CO-3 in a waiting game.

Why We Wrote This

A Trump-backed incumbent finds herself in a tighter race than expected. As election workers persevere, the nail-biter has demanded patience from a far-flung voter base.

“Every day I check the tally,” says Frisch voter Laura Van Deusen, a middle school math teacher in Rifle who’s concerned about women’s rights and the environment. 

“It doesn’t sound like she wants to listen to the other side,” she says, whereas Mr. Frisch “really talked about working on both sides of the aisle.

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