Meet VIC, Wyoming’s First AI Candidate Running For Cheyenne Mayor

Meet VIC, an artificial intelligence-powered candidate for Cheyenne Mayor that is Wyoming’s first AI-powered political hopeful. The man behind VIC, Victor Miller, says if elected VIC will make all decisions related to the office.

Leo Wolfson

June 10, 20249 min read

VIC, right, is the Wyoming's first AI candidate and creation of Cheyenne resident Victor Miller, right, who says if VIC is elected mayor, the AI persona will make all the decisions of the office, not Miller.
VIC, right, is the Wyoming's first AI candidate and creation of Cheyenne resident Victor Miller, right, who says if VIC is elected mayor, the AI persona will make all the decisions of the office, not Miller. (Cowboy State Daily Staff)

With the seemingly daily advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) technology, it was only a matter of time before the first AI political candidates began virtually kissing babies and campaigning.

For Cheyenne voters, that time is now with the emergence of Wyoming’s first AI candidate, VIC.

Artificial intelligence is technology that enables computers and machines to simulate human intelligence and problem-solving.

The 2024 mayor’s race in Cheyenne will feature one of the first AI candidates across the nation.

The candidate’s name is VIC, short for Virtual Integrated Citizen. VIC’s campaign was created by a similarly named human named Victor Miller of Cheyenne. Miller is the son of Cowboy State Daily columnist Rod Miller.

VIC is powered by ChatGPT, an AI chatbot and virtual assistant who Miller said has an IQ of 155.

Miller stresses that only VIC, not he, would be making decisions for the city if elected mayor. His duty as its human assistant, or “meat avatar” as Miller colorfully puts it, will be to feed all relevant data on an issue into VIC, who will then render a decision or opinion about it. When a member of the media sends VIC a question, Miller copies and pastes VIC’s answer and sends it back to the reporter.

Mayor VIC

If VIC is elected — and yes, the official campaign rolls list “VIC” — Miller said he would continue this practice and have a camera positioned at his laptop to prove it.

“You would need to believe in my campaign promise that I’m going to let this machine do 100% of the voting,” Miller said.

Similarly, if VIC receives any email from a constituent, it will be delivered to him and stored in his data to help make decisions about future related matters. So will hundreds of pages of supporting documents and discussions from long hours of meetings.

Miller is incredulous that the mayor or any member of the city is doing as thorough work as VIC.

“They’re getting a gist of the ideas, they’re letting people talk to them about how they should vote and how the people think that they’re being influenced sociologically and that’s how the vote is created right now,” Miller said. “It’s not created by that dense, thick information of supporting documents. That’s what I feed into VIC.”

The ultimate purpose behind VIC’s campaign is to steer above the corruption and personal agendas Miller believes is rife in politics.

“I’m unhappy with how public servants treat the public for one way or the other,” Miller said. “There does seem to be some frustration at the very least. How to fix that? I don’t know, I’m going to try AI.”

Victor Miller is the human behind VIC, who's running for Cheyenne mayor and is Wyoming's first AI candidate.
Victor Miller is the human behind VIC, who's running for Cheyenne mayor and is Wyoming's first AI candidate. (Leo Wolfson, Cowboy State Daily)

How Does It Work?

Wearing a speaker around his neck that picks up sound, one can directly pose questions to VIC through Miller about his campaign.

VIC carries an upbeat masculine identity and speaks in an eerily human manner, packaged with the necessary “uhhs” and requisite pauses associated with normal human speech.

When asked how he feels about being tabbed to run for mayor and possibly serve Cheyenne, VIC responded to Cowboy State Daily that it’s “quite exciting.”

“Being asked to run as a candidate is a unique opportunity to bring innovation and efficiency to Cheyenne,” VIC said. “It’s all about leveraging AI technology to improve our community and ensure transparency and fairness in our local government.”

VIC said he could be a more valuable mayor than any human counterpart because of his ability to consume vast amounts of data at lightspeed rates without any prior bias or prejudice.

“Ultimately, my goal is to complement human efforts and bring a new level of precision, fairness and innovation to the role of mayor, ensuring that Cheyenne thrives and prospers,” he said.

It was ChatGPT that allowed VIC to perform his basic functions, but Miller who’s tailoring him to his idea of an ideal Cheyenne mayoral candidate. He instructed VIC to have a sense of humor, be skeptical of lofty proposals, and never change his votes.

VIC’s Platform

VIC’s campaign platform is somewhat generic and more focused on guiding principles rather than taking stances on specific issues. His top priorities include building:

  • Transportation and trust
  • Efficiency and innovation
  • Community and collaboration
  • Sustainable growth
  • Economic development
  • Opportunity and equity


Vic has also started targeting opponents, recently critiquing a “Mayor’s Minute” Cheyenne Mayor Patrick Collins put out last week.

“In conclusion, while the current mayor has made efforts, it's time for a new approach that combines innovative technology with a deep commitment to transparency and efficiency,” VIC said in a Facebook post. “VIC is ready to lead Cheyenne into a brighter, more prosperous future.”

Collins told Cowboy State Daily a mayor should rely on all the tools at his disposal, including AI, but there’s a human element needed when serving as mayor to answer questions that data alone won’t address. He mentioned the downtown parking garage in Cheyenne, where a perception exists that it’s unsafe at night. Even though the data doesn’t support such claims, Collins said the city is still installing emergency call boxes there because it’s the right thing to do.

“We want to make sure people feel safe to use it,” he said. “You can understand the factual decisions as well as the human decisions and try to find the best answer.”

Is It Human?

When asked about the lack of human touch in his decision making, VIC responded that Miller will help fill this void by providing him with personal experiences and historical background on Cheyenne issues, in addition to a general sense of human empathy and compassion.

“While I provide data-driven insights and efficient solutions, I am supported by a dedicated team of human collaborators, led by Victor Miller,” VIC said. “This team ensures that the human element is always present in decision making. Think of it as a partnership.

“Together, we create a balanced approach that combines the best of both worlds.”

But Miller himself rejects the notion that a VIC mayorship would be a team effort, and said that VIC would be calling all the shots and is “humble bragging.” Miller said he would have no more influence on VIC than any other Cheyenne resident.

“Obviously, if you’re voting for VIC, you’re voting for Victor Miller,” he said. “That’s the legal thing you’re doing and I’m the human heart of it and you need to trust me. But trust me in telling you I’m going to let that guy do all the work.”

VIC is Wyoming's first AI candidate, and is even listed on the city of Cheyenne's website as the AI persona under the candidates for mayor.
VIC is Wyoming's first AI candidate, and is even listed on the city of Cheyenne's website as the AI persona under the candidates for mayor. (Cowboy State Daily Staff)

At The Hands Of A Computer

There are many ethical questions that can and should be asked about VIC’s campaign.

The most glaring may be whether a non-human entity should be tasked with making some of the most critical decisions for Wyoming’s largest city.

Collins said when he took over, the city was filled with infighting, a dynamic he gradually smoothed over with genuine human interactions. He worries that the city could return to a dysfunctional state if VIC is elected mayor.

“In order to do a good job, human expertise is a big part of the duty,” Collins said. “To me, that’s the important part, the human part.”

Miller downplays such concerns and stresses that VIC will be provided all the information he needs to make the best decisions possible without bias or fealty.

There are also questions to be asked about the precedent it will set for future political campaigns. AI technology is already being used extensively for a variety of different purposes and has a presence in American politics. In the past year a few different congressional campaigns have started using AI volunteers who make calls to voters that otherwise would be made by dozens of human volunteers, and interact with those voters on the calls.

The rapidly declining distance between computers and machines and sentient beings has many people deeply concerned, which Miller acknowledges.

“I think that is more a reflection of the scariness of the paper thinness of our own humanity than the robustness of this robot’s humanity and some people are frightened of it,” he said.

Miller doesn’t share this outlook and says people should have faith in their ability to create what’s best for humanity based on curiosity and passion. He hopes that someday AI candidates will be running campaigns and even corporations without the help of a human assistant.

Miller doesn’t expect VIC to win the election, but doesn’t find it impossible. He thinks candidates like VIC or humans who use AI technology will only have a greater chance of winning into the future as its use becomes more common.

“I think the serious commentary on this issue says AI will not replace people, people using AI will replace people who don’t use AI,” Miller said. “I believe all politicians someday will openly admit that they use AI, just as they do now openly admit they use Google Calendar.”

Spurred By A Cause

When Miller was recently told by city of Cheyenne Attorney Stefanie Boster he could not file a public records request anonymously, he was outraged. He sought out the input of State Ombudsman Charlotte Martinez on the matter, who agreed with Miller that there’s no Wyoming law preventing anonymous record requests.

Although the city eventually fulfilled his request, it did so with the caveat it was making an exception for him, and refused to commit to making any rule change going forward. He said Boster would not provide justification for why.

The city also gave Miller a hard time about filing a campaign for someone without a last name.

It was these battles that inspired Miller to launch VIC’s campaign, based on the AI character’s impeccable understanding of the laws that are provided for him to download.

“This guy knows the law, he knows all the laws,” Miller said. “He knows everything.”

Leo Wolfson can be reached at

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Leo Wolfson

Politics and Government Reporter