By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
Outgoing Rep. Scott Clem, speaking during a rally Monday, repeatedly called for Wyoming residents to take part in civil disobedience against statewide health orders aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus.
Clem urged attendees several times to ignore the statewide mask mandate and other precautions included in the statewide health orders issued by Gov. Mark Gordon and Dr. Alexia Harrist, the state’s public health officer.
“You shouldn’t follow laws that are unjust,” Clem, R-Gillette, said during the “Free Wyoming Rally” he organized at the Capitol.
The rally, which Clem organized to “practice our constitutional rights to peaceably assemble and protest the tyranny of our Wyoming State Governor,” saw more than 100 people in attendance.
Almost none of the crowd members were wearing masks, nor were Clem or any of the other Wyoming state legislators in attendance, including Sens. Anthony Bouchard and Lynn Hutchings, both R-Cheyenne.
The rally opened with comments by Jennifer Burns, who unsuccessfully ran for state House in the Republican primary in August. The crowd also sang the National Anthem.
During the rally, Clem criticized Gov. Mark Gordon’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, focusing larely on the shutdown of many businesses in the spring and the statewide mask mandate issued in December.
“We are here because we recognize we have a tyrant in that building,” Clem said. “Your constitutional rights are non-negotiable.”
Some of the signs and flags that could be seen in the crowd included “Time 4 Gordon 2 Go,” “Christians for Trump,” “Stop the Steal” and “Don’t Tread on Me.”
Bouchard also spoke during the rally, railing against the “fake media” and repeating the allegation that the statewide health orders are unconstitutional.
He also called Gordon a criminal and called on state health officer Dr. Alexia Harrist to be fired or for Gordon to ask for her resignation.