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January 15, 2023    Political Note #532 Adam Frisch, Colorado 03

2023                           General Election

The Congressional election is not until November 5, 2024.  The Presidential election will drown almost everything out.  Not quite everything.  States will be electing Governors and Senators.  Districts will be electing Members of Congress.  Cities will elect mayors.  We have a lot of elections in this country.

Where we can, it makes sense to start early.  Even though Adam Frisch will not face Lauren Boebert again in an election for 22 months, it is not too early to begin raising money for him.  Adam Frisch has filed the papers that make it permissible for him to raise money.  He has been conducting a listening tour of Colorado’s 3rdCongressional District – an enormous district geographically covering the state’s Western slope.  His expanded tour includes touching base with state and national leaders.  He is listening and doing a little talking.  People see him differently now that he is in the fortunate position of having come very close to the biggest upset of the 2022 election.  Remember.  He lost by 546 votes.

Adam Frisch was a city councilor in a city with fewer than 7,000 people.  The city was Aspen, Colorado, a well known small city, especially to ski enthusiasts.  He has a friend in Washington.  Dean Phillips, who represents Minnesota’s 3rd Congressional District was a friend through middle school and high school.  Adam Frisch is not only a small-town guy.  Before he moved permanently to Aspen, he lived in Manhattan.  He went to New York after college, waited on tables, and became a currency trader – a risky business which contributed to his net worth of roughly $10 million.

His dad is a gynecologist and obstetrician who completed his national service on an Indian reservation.  Adam Frisch lived on the reservation in Montana until he was five.  When the family moved to Minnesota, his dad had a successful private practice and then worked the last few years for Planned Parenthood.  If it were not for a skiing accident, Adam French’s enrollment at the University of Colorado would have coincided with a skiing career.

Owner and President of her family’s cable television equipment firm, his wife Katy’s connection with skiing has been recreational and communal.  A graduate of Brown with an MBA from The University of Chicago, in Colorado, she served as President of the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club and co-founded its Ajax Cup, the Club’s fund raiser. She chaired the Aspen School Board after serving as head of their Financial Advisory Board.

Much as Adam Frisch was generally seen as a very long shot for defeating Lauren Boebert, he was convinced he had a path to winning the election.  She had won her 2020 election by only six points.

Adam Frisch’s path was not automatic.  He faced an activist in the Democratic primary and won by 290 votes.  He presented himself as a conservative businessman with progressive social values.  He supported abortion rights and opposed student loan forgiveness.  He advocated for more health care options on the private healthcare market (presumably by loosening the requirements for plans that are offered).

Adam Frisch came close to winning and could win in 2024 because his strategy fit both who he is and what this rural, conservative district is.  Being from Aspen was not exactly an advantage.  Being willing to do the work was a huge advantage.  He had financial bona fides to add to his personal ones.  His 2022 campaign resembled his current listening tour in that he was serious about listening.  He worked hard to get himself in front of every rural group he could find – barbecues, brewpubs, and meetings with people who have meetings.  He talked about remembering his life in Montana, about his grandfather who created a cattle trading business.

Personal qualities counted.  He described himself as calm, and collected, and passionate about what he does.  He called himself a practical man uninterested in the Washington circus.  The circus comment resonates against Lauren Boebert.  Her extreme politics and extreme personality; her participation in what Adam Frisch called the “anger-tainment” industry made her more of a national figure than a local one. Adam Frisch’s focus was on the 30% or of Republicans who were willing to vote against Lauren Boebert in a primary and were “sick and tired of her shenanigans and her betrayal of the district.”  If he could demonstrate that he was “the safe enough choice to make them walk across the street, he could win and almost did that.

Running for 2024, he will be opposing Boebert and a circus-like Republican majority in the House of Representatives. Like some moderate Democrats in 2018, in his 2022 campaign he promised not to vote for Nancy Pelosi for Speaker.  This time he might refer to the Republican Speaker election and comment that Boebert could not get voting “present” straight.

Adam Frisch was competitive raising money for the race.  He raised $4.4. million for the campaign; a lot, though it was less than Boebert’s 7.5 million.  He had enough to run a very strong campaign and even left a half million dollars on the table.  Boebert left nearly a million dollars unspent.

Both candidates will start the 2024 campaign with resources.  Adam Frisch will have an even easier time raising money this time round.  He is unlikely to have a primary opponent; she may.  However, Lauren Boebert will not be complacent.  Start now for what will be an expensive Congressional campaign.  Help Adam Frisch. 

 Though he has not yet announced his candidacy, he is not going to pass up this chance to defeat Boebert. Don’t pass him up.  Sign up for a monthly donation.  It will make a difference.

Elections coming up

February 21 and April 4

Virginia Fourth Congressional District Special Election on February 21

Jennifer McClellan is running to replace the only current vacancy in the US Congress – Virginia’s Four Congressional District. A state senator representing the 9th Senate district, she is the child of a civil rights activist and a university professor. She ran Terry’s McAuliffe’s transition team when he was elected governor in 2013, is vice chair of the Virginia Democratic Party and of the legislature’s Black Caucus.  She is the favorite to defeat Pastor and Navy veteran Leon Benjamin, Sr.  Her victory will give us a Congress with 222 Republicans and 213 Democrats.  See Len’s Political Note #527.

New Hampshire Special Election on February 21

House District 8, Rochester Ward 4

Incumbent Chuck Grassie is running because of a rarity.  In November, he and the Republican David Walker, a former mayor, tied.  Because New Hampshire’s House of Representatives is so large, a single seat might not matter much.  This election in February will matter.  Republicans have a narrow majority – 201-198.  Make that margin still narrower (201-199).  Help reelect Chuck Grassie.  He is a man with experience in government. He’s been a city councilor for the city of Rochester, population 32,000, since 1974 – not quite 50 years.  His most recent proposal there was to look into tiny houses for the homeless.

Wisconsin Supreme Court Multiparty Primary on February 21 followed by a General Election on April 4

Janet Protasiewicz is running for the Wisconsin Supreme Court.  Her win in the February 21st primary and the April 4th General Election would flip the Wisconsin Supreme Court from 4-3 Republican to 4-3 Democrat with enormous implications for issues such as abortion and redistricting.  This is an open seat because a Republican Justice retired.  The election is in the spring rather than November because Wisconsin strives to limit partisanship in judicial elections. Every dollar counts here.  This will be a very expensive judicial election – expensive because it is so important. See Len’s Political Note #528

Wisconsin Primary on February 21 followed by a Special Election on April 4

Jody Habush Sinykin is running in the special election for Wisconsin’s State Senate District 08.  She is also running to prevent Republicans from having two thirds of the seats in the Wisconsin State Senate.  If the current State Senator for the District were not retiring, Republicans would have 22 of the 33 State Senate seats. Some Wisconsin legislators see having the power of a two thirds majority as an opportunity to impeach and convict Democratic officials.  See Len’s Political Note #529