While more people testified against the bill, Coe said there was strong support. Not all opposition was from higher education, Coe said. A letter was read by a representative from the Wyoming High School Activities Association against the bill.
But Coe said he gave Jaggi as much time as he could. Since there are more members of the House than the Senate, the Senate gets busy toward the end of the session when the House bills start piling up, he said.
Not so, said Rep. Allen Jaggi, R Lyman. After all, after two gun bills were drafted, attorneys for the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America reviewed them, he said.
The Wyoming Legislature has adjourned for the year, but the bullets continue to fly.
During the hearing, Coe pointed out that he and other legislators had a sterling record with the NRA. The committee ultimately took no action on the bill, which killed it. Such a move also wouldn't show up on NRA assembled vote scorecards, important in a state where NRA ratings of legislators are highly prized.
would speak or act on a gun related bill in a way that bothered Anthony Bouchard, executive director of the Wyoming Gun Owners Association. Then Bouchard would create anti legislator memes, usually photos with overlaid political statements, and posted them to the Wyoming Gun Owners Association Facebook page.
For instance, just because there is a picture of a legislator and the president together doesn't mean that the two met and discussed guns. But Bouchard said his is a "no compromise" gun group. If legislators want to limit the Second Amendment, to him that means they are anti gun.
reference that suggests the lawmaker has a small penis. Another shows a legislator with text saying the legislator thinks parents shouldn't be trusted with guns to protect their children.
He noted his memes were within his First Amendment rights and didn't threaten anyone.
Bouchard said his memes are not meant to be taken literally. But the spirit of the message is accurate, he said.
Wyoming lawmakers reload over failed gun bills
Christensen received 1,500 emails about the issue, Ross told the Star Tribune. The gun supporters were upset about an amendment Christensen proposed to a gun bill and one comment included an implied threat.
One such image shows a Wyoming Republican lawmaker with President Barack Obama and text that suggests the lawmaker agrees with the president's gun views. Another includes a legislator's photo with a pop culture Womens Nike Cortez Basic Leather Casual Shoes
"We have to post a notice of a meeting at least 24 hours ahead," he said. "It was pretty well known we were doing the bill."
The fight over the gun bills also found a battleground in more subtle ways, supporters claim. Jaggi said Senate Education Chairman Hank Coe, R Cody, didn't give Jaggi enough time to assemble supporters of a bill to allow concealed weapons at colleges, sporting events in publicly owned arenas and at public schools in some circumstances.
But House and Senate leaders disagree and insist they have solid records on gun rights. Gun rights supporters' mass emails, mocking Facebook messages and attacks on legislators went too far, they say.
One bill would have given the state instead of local governments final say on gun laws. The other would have punished federal officers or judges for enforcing federal laws and orders on magazines or semi automatic firearms.
"I've been in the Legislature since 1995. I haven't seen anything like this session," Senate President Tony Ross, R Cheyenne, said. "We welcome public input. What I strive for is civil discourse, to take out individual attacks and try to discuss the issues."
The responses on his Facebook page have not always been civil. To a meme of Sen. Leland Christensen, R Alta, one commenter suggested members of the public send him "hate mail and if you get Khaki Nike Cortez
Nicholas refused to bring the bills to the Senate floor for debate, effectively killing both pieces Nike Classic Cortez Premium Men's Shoe of legislation. Attacks from pro gun groups inspired his decision, he told The Associated Press in February. Nicholas didn't return messages to the Casper Star Tribune seeking comment for this story.
A handful of lawmakers are blasting House and Senate leaders for killing gun bills, shots those leaders deflect at pro gun lobbyists and their aggressive tactics. As for the lobbyists, at least one says legislative leaders need to grow thicker skin.
Senate Majority Floor Leader Phil Nicholas, R Laramie, accused both of being intentionally poorly written pieces of legislation.
a chance go to his auction and run up the bids and don't pay." Christensen works as an auctioneer.
"For all of this vetting, for Sen. Nicholas to stand up to say these were poorly drafted, I was way disappointed," Jaggi said.
"In my mind I think all of this was a pre calculated thing," Jaggi said.
The hearing to discuss the bill was stacked with higher education leaders who opposed the bill, Jaggi said, making opposition appear stronger than it was.
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Lawmakers said the memes contained lies. Toward the end of the session, they began to publicly criticize Bouchard, culminating in Nicholas' decision to block bills from a floor vote. Bouchard, in turn, created more memes.
The images were political posters posted on Facebook. They were easy to share. Both they and the comments they attracted quickly got under legislators' skin.
During the session, a pattern between legislators and the gun lobby emerged.
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