Wyoming’s Primary Election Is Set: 167 Candidates In 72 Contested Races

With the 5 p.m. Friday deadline for filing to run in the August primary election in. Wyoming past, the field is set: 167 candidates in 72 contested races.

Leo Wolfson

June 01, 20245 min read

The Wyoming Capitol in Cheyenne.
The Wyoming Capitol in Cheyenne. (Matt Idler for Cowboy State Daily)

As of 5 p.m. Friday, the official 2024 election candidate roster in Wyoming is signed, sealed and delivered.

Overall, 167 candidates have filed to run for state and federal offices in Wyoming. This does not include future write-in candidates or people who choose to run as Independents for the general election. There will be at least 74 contested state and federal primary races. This does not include county commission and other local races.

“We had a robust candidate filing period to kick off Wyoming’s 2024 election cycle, in which we have seen a number of candidates filed with our office,” Secretary of State Chuck Gray said. “With the candidate filing period now closed, our office is focused on continuing to serve the people of Wyoming and working with Wyoming’s county clerks to oversee and administer a great election here in Wyoming.”

Participation is a bit down this year. In 2022, there were 193 candidates and 82 contested races throughout the election cycle.

Both U.S. Sen. John Barrasso and Rep. Harriet Hageman will have primary and general election challengers.

U.S. Senate

In the Republican primary for U.S. Senate, Barrasso will take on Casper resident Reid Rasner and Laramie resident John Holtz. Rasner is a relative newcomer to Wyoming politics but has aggressively campaigned around the state over the past year, but also has drawn some criticism.

Holtz was a longtime judge in Douglas who now runs a private law practice. Holtz ran in the 2020 U.S. Senate Republican primary race against Sen. Cynthia Lummis, finishing seventh. He also ran for interim Secretary of State in the fall of 2022.

The winner of the Republican primary will face Laramie Democrat Scott Morrow in the general election, who has no primary challenger.

U.S. House

In the Republican primary for U.S. House, Hageman will take on Casper attorney Steve Helling. Helling ran in the 2022 Democratic primary for U.S. House, finishing last out of three candidates. During that race, Helling said he supported former President Donald Trump and expressed virtually no views of the Democratic Party.

The winner of this race will take on Cheyenne Democrat Kyle Cameron in the general election, who has no primary challenger.

Key Legislature Races

There weren't too many surprise candidacy announcements in the waning days of the filing period, but a few were eye-catching.

One of the biggest themes to watch will be that of former state legislators trying to get their seats back.

In House District 6, former legislator Aaron Clausen will take on Freedom Caucus member Rep. Tomi Strock, R-Douglas, in a rematch of the 2022 election.

The only contested Democratic race in the state will involve former legislator and LGBTQ advocate Sara Burlingame, who will go up against Teresa Wolff in the House District 11 primary in Cheyenne. This is the seat now held by Rep. Jared Olsen, R-Cheyenne, who announced this spring he’s running for the Senate.

Also running to get their seat back is former legislator John Romero-Martinez, who will take on his cousin Rep. Tamara Trujillo, R-Cheyenne, and Lee Filer in the House District 44 primary in Cheyenne. Filer is a former Democratic member of the Legislature. Trujillo beat Romero-Martinez, then an incumbent, in the 2022 primary.

Former Libertarian Rep. Marshall Burt is now running as a Republican for House District 39 in Sweetwater County against Rep. Cody Wylie, R-Rock Springs, and Laura McKee. This is another rematch as Wylie beat Burt by a large margin in the 2022 general election.

Former legislator Bob Wharff, who ran unsuccessfully for the Senate in 2022, is taking on Rep. Ryan Berger, R-Evanston, in the House District 49 Republican primary.

Who’s Not Coming Back?

There were also a few unexpected departures from current legislators who did not file to run again.

One of the most significant is Rep. Don Burkhart, R-Rawlins, who has served in the Legislature since 2011 and is chair of the House Minerals Committee.

Other departures that weren’t previously announced include Reps. Sandy Newsome, R-Cody, Forrest Chadwick, R-Evansville, and Kevin O’Hearn, R-Mills.

Sen. Charles Scott, R-Casper, first elected in 1978 and the longest serving member of the Legislature, is running for reelection in the Republican primary against former Natrona County Commissioner Rob Hendry and Charles Schoenwolf.

Every member of the farther right Wyoming Freedom Caucus is running for reelection.

Near-Guaranteed Wins

There are also a number of uncontested races, which unless changed by the entry of an Independent candidate for the general election, means that the lone candidate is nearly guaranteed an election win.

Some of the most notable legislators who won’t face a primary or general election challenger include Reps. John Bear, R-Gillette; Steve Harshman, R-Casper; Mike Yin, D-Jackson; Liz Storer, D-Jackson; Art Washut, R-Casper; Chris Knapp, R-Gillette; and Reuben Tarver, R-Gillette.


There are 19 Democratic candidates in the current election cycle, with every currently serving Democrat up for reelection running again. There are no Democrats running in any part of northern Wyoming.

In 2022, there were 33 Democratic candidates.

Leo Wolfson can be reached at leo@cowboystatedaily.com.

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Leo Wolfson

Politics and Government Reporter