44 Days to Election Day: Wyoming
Wyoming is one of the reddest of red states and there is no way that Barack Obama will win or even come close in this state. Unfortunately, it only has three electoral votes. An interesting tidbit: Wyoming has the greatest degree of federal representation in Congress as determined by population. That is, with three in Congress (two Senators and a Representative), they have the lowest population to representative proportion.
In the Senate race, incumbent Republican Tom Barrasso is pretty much assured reelection this year for another 6 years. He is considered one of the most conservative Republicans in the Senate and sits on the powerful Energy Committee in the Senate. He will face off against Democrat and highly unknown Tim Chesnut. Barrasso’s fundraising has far outpaced that of the Democrat and given his rising prominence in the GOP, this is a slam dunk retention of a Senate seat for the Republicans.
In the lone at-large Congressional seat, incumbent Cynthia Lummis, a right-leaning rank and file Republican, seeks reelection against Democrat Chris Henrichsen. Most importantly, she sits on the House Appropriations Committee which control the country’s purse strings. He is 35 year-old Casper College political science professor who has characterized Lummis as an anti-government ideologue. His campaign thus far has been to, in his words, win over the “Alan Simpson Republicans.” He supports implementation of the Simpson-Bowles Commission findings and portrays Lummis as a supporter of the Ryan budget. Thus far, Lummis has raised over $500,000 in a fairly cheap state while Henrichsen has raised next to nothing. Expect a Lummis landslide in a very conservative state.
Wyoming has three questions on the ballot. The first would allow district commissioners to act even if a district court judge is present and is able to hear a case. One would have to question the motivation for this amendment that places an incredible amount of judicial power into the hands of a bureaucracy. However, in effect it would allow them to hear cases under the auspices of a district judge.
A second question, like that in Idaho, would create a constitutional amendment which guarantees hunting and fishing rights in the state. As in other states, it is a preemptory attempt to thwart judicial efforts by animal rights groups to stop certain hunting practices. And like other states, there are no active attempts by animal rights groups in the state to do so at this time.
The final question is considered the anti-mandate question which would prohibit the state from compelling any Wyoming citizen to purchase health care insurance. This is obviously in response to Obamacare and the question appears on other state ballots this year. Missouri has passed such an amendment while efforts in Indiana, Minnesota, New Mexico and North Dakota were defeated. This may be a statement of support type of ballot question with regards to the mandate question. In effect, citizens will be asked whether they agree with that provision of Obamacare. Obviously, the federal government would have the authority to enforce that provision through the tax code on federal income taxes.
In conclusion: In one of the most conservative states in the Nation, Republicans should sweep all races this year.
Running totals thus far: Obama leads in electoral votes 23-16 at this point with the Senate now tied 7-7. Republicans control the House 13-12.
Next: Tomorrow- California