Lauren Boebert’s Restaurant—Which I Went to and Honestly Kinda Sucked—Closes

Lauren Boebert outside Shooters Grill on Election Day in 2020McKenzie Lange/The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel/AP

Facts matter: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter. Support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to our print magazine.Shooters Grill, Rep. Lauren Boebert’s (R-Colo.) Rifle, Colorado restaurant where servers are encouraged to open carry firearms, closed its doors on Sunday after the property’s landlord declined to renew the lease, according to local news reports.
It’s unclear why the landlord chose not to keep Shooters as a tenant, but a source told the Daily Beast that the property manager felt a “moral” imperative to shutter the restaurant.
“We were like a family,” Boebert told the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. “I would say Shooters, for any employee, was their life. We lived and breathed it every single day. They were a part of this culture and brand that we created in Rifle, and there was a lot of pride with that.”
The former Shooters employees I interviewed earlier this year tell a different story. Five former workers told me that Boebert consistently failed to pay her employees on time. One claimed that, in one instance, Boebert pointed a loaded gun at him.
Boebert has also come under investigation from several state agencies over her alleged use of campaign funds to pay off tax liens on her restaurant. Between 2016 and 2020, she accumulated $20,000 in tax liens from the state because of her failure to pay unemployment premiums.
“It’s been an amazing journey,” Boebert told the Post Independent. “I don’t regret anything.”
She also said that the new venture “may look like a Shooters coffee shop with pastries and some easy breakfast sandwiches and merchandise.” Perhaps that explains the message scrawled on a chalkboard outside the darkened doorway of the restaurant: “Thanks for the support. Stay tuned. #Covfefe.”
Mother Jones was unable to reach the landlord for comment. A phone call to the now-shuttered restaurant went unanswered.