UPDATE: The Wyoming Senate on Tuesday removed House Bill 125 from the Senate Judiciary Committee, where it was voted down on Monday night, and brought the bill back for consideration by the Committee of the Whole.

The vote essentially revived the bill, which appeared to have been dead following the negative committee vote.

Sen. Dave Kinskey [R-Johnson, Sheridan counties] invoked Senate rule 5-5 in calling for the recall from the committee. After a highly-charged debate about the margins and mechanics needed to approve such a move, the motion was approved on a 16-15 vote.

The end result is that senators will vote on the bill on general file when they return from lunch at 2 p.m. today

Here is how they voted on the motion to recall House BILL 125

Ayes: Biteman, Boner, Bouchard, Brennan, Dockstader, French, Hicks, Ide, Jones, Kinskey, Kolb, Laursen, McKeown, Salazar, Scott, Steinmetz
Nays: Anderson, Baldwin, Barlow, Case, Cooper, Ellis, Gierau, Furphy, Hutchings, Landen, Nethercott, Pappas, Rothfuss, Schuler, President Driskill

Original Article: A bill that would have gotten rid of most gun-free zones in Wyoming has been defeated again, despite being overwhelmingly approved in the Wyoming House of Representatives recently.

House Bill 125 was voted down 3-2 in the Senate Judiciary Committee late Monday night, with committee chair Sen. Bill Landen [R-Natrona County] casting the deciding vote after a long pause. Sens. Wendy Shuler [R-Uinta County] and Dan Furphy (R-Albany County] joined Landen in voting against the measure. Sen. Cale Case [R-Fremont County] voted for the bill after proposing several amendments. Sen. Ed Cooper [R-Big Horn, Fremont, Hot Springs, Park, Washakie counties] voted for the bill.

There are no Democrats on the committee.

The measure was overwhelmingly approved in the Wyoming House on a 54-7 vote. Gun rights activists have been trying for years to get similar bills signed into law, and that effort has fallen short again.

Supporter: Concerns Over Safety Without Gun-Free Zones Not Borne Out By Facts

Nephi Cole with the National Shooting Sports Foundation told the committee that there are 21 states where concealed carry is legal in their state capital and another 11 states that allow unlimited concealed carry on college campuses. ''I would like you to know how many accidents we have seen as a result of these policies...... and that number is zero" Cole told the committee. Regarding concerns that eliminating gun-free zones leads to gun violence, Cole went on to say ''The facts and the stats don't bear out that that is a concern which is warranted.''

Opponent: Bill ''Puts Kids Lives In Direct Danger"

But Dylan Ford of Cheyenne, who described himself as a lifelong Wyoming resident, a gun owner since the age of nine, and a Republican, told the committee "I think this bill is dangerous. It's a bill that puts kids' lives in direct danger because we are mixing chaos plus firearms, which is something we should never do." Ford said schools have increased security, including bullet-resistant windows, heavy auto-locking doors, and policies to prevent armed people from entering the schools. ''But all of that armor we have put up around schools doesn't mean much when we are opening our doors to armed people."

Monday was the deadline for bills to be approved in committee for the 2024 session of the legislature.

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Gallery Credit: Kolby Fedore


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