Donn Bruns, Lifestyle Photography
Donn Bruns, Lifestyle Photography

The primary sponsor of the ''stand your ground" bill passed by the 2018 Wyoming Legislature says he thinks Governor Matt Mead's decision not to sign the bill was based in large part on what he says is the governor's personal dislike for him.

The bill became law without the governor's signature recently.

On Tuesday morning on KGAB AM Senator Anthony Bouchard [R-Laramie County] said it was ''no secret" that he had opposed  Mead's candidacy when he ran for governor. The senator went on to say ''some of his staffers, even recently, have been trying to smear me."

Senator Bouchard did not elaborate on the alleged smear, but he did say he thinks Governor Mead retained negative feelings toward him, adding "This whole thing is personal."

He went on to say the bill should be examined on "it's own merits.''

The governor, in an interview on KGAB last week, said he declined to sign the bill in part to send a message about he called ''overaggressive lobbying efforts" by supporters of the legislation. He also said he doesn't think the bill greatly changed existing Wyoming law on self-defense.

While Governor Mead in that interview did not name any particular organization has having gone overboard, several senators said when the bill was being considered that they had received notifications from the National Rifle Association and Wyoming Gun Owners warning them that votes to amend the bill would be considered ''anti-gun."

But Bouchard in his comments said the notes from the gun organizations wasn't threatening, adding ''I think it was a courtesy deal to the legislators."

The bill allows Wyoming residents who are attacked in public to use deadly force to defend themselves without retreating first.

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