One of several candidates vying for the Republican nomination for governor of Wyoming claims the University of Wyoming's ban on firearms violates the Wyoming and U.S. Constitutions.

Taylor Haynes also is vowing to work to get the university to change the policy.

His comments follow the citation by university police over the weekend of a delegate to the state Republican Convention for violating the policy. The convention was held at the University of Wyoming campus, and Lyle Williams was cited for openly carrying a gun on campus.

UW spokesman Chad Baldwin said it is the university's policy that no weapons are allowed on campus unless an exemption is given to someone by the UW Police Department in special circumstances. Baldwin said no exemption had been granted by the UWPD for the convention.

Williams faces a May 8 court date in the case.

Haynes, who was at the convention when the incident occurred,  told KGAB radio on Monday that he intends to do everything possible to support Williams in his legal fight. Haynes also said Williams was only one of many people who was openly carrying firearms, adding they "posed no threat" to public safety. In addition to being unconstitutional, Haynes said the ban violates existing Wyoming law.

Baldwin said University Police Chief Mike Samp thought the citation issued to Williams sent the message about the weapons ban and didn't feel it was necessary to cite everyone who was carrying a gun to make that point.

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