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Representative Sara Burlingame

Bob Geha: 48-Hour Waiting Period for Abortions Approved in House

in News/Health care/politics
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By Bob Geha, Cowboy State Daily

A measure that would impose a 48-hour waiting period on women seeking an abortion won final approval from the House on Friday.

HB 197 was approved on the House floor on its third and final reading by a vote of 39-17.

The bill was amended to reduce a proposed sentence of 10 years for doctors who do not observe the waiting period to one year, a $1,000 fine or both.

The change was supported by Rep. Tyler Lindholm, R-Sundance, who said the penalty originally proposed in the bill was too strict.

“To apply a 10-year felony provision to that when we don’t apply the same standard to a rapist is absurd,” he said.

However, other amendments that would have reimbursed women for temporary housing, meals and other expenses while waiting the 48 hours was rejected.

Rep. Sara Burlingame, D-Cheyenne, said the amendment would have provided much needed support for women who are poor.

“I am trusting this body to say if we’re gonig to ask women to do this, we will set aside the money,” she said. “Not for all women. If you have means and you can go to Jackson, you’re on your own. But if you’re poor, then the state acknowledges your right to medical care … “

The vote sends the bill to the Senate for its review.

State of the State Reaction: “Thank God for the Permanent Mineral Trust Fund”

in News/politics
Sara Burlingame
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By Bob Geha, Cowboy State Daily

Legislative reaction to Gov Gordon State of the State address was mild and agreeable although both of their budgets are miles apart.

“If you look at our budget in the legislature versus the governor’s budget, they aren’t the same at all. We want very different things. But look at how much goodwill we have for each other, ” Rep. Sara Burlingame, D-Cheyenne, said.

“I think there is such warmth and mutual understand between the legislative body and the governor and that’s a really good sign going into the budget session where we don’t agree about a lot of where that money is going to go,” she said.

“Thank God for our forefathers and putting together that Permanent Mineral Trust Fund. It saved our bacon and it will continue to keep us safe from very drastic cuts,” Sen. Bo Biteman, R-Ranchester, said.

No mention of Medicaid expansion in Governor Gordon’s address. House Bill 75 would authorize the state to come up with an expansion plan.

“Frankly I was disappointed that he didn’t,” Sen. Mike Gierau, D-Jackson, said. “But I understand. We’ve talked to the governor quite a bit about it and I think he’s evolving in that position. Hopefully we can get a bill out for him to take a look at.”

Gieurau also says the governor is sticking his neck out for Wyoming tourism by supporting a statewide lodging tax.

Robert Geha, Cowboy State Daily.

Wyoming Legislator Says Bill Prohibiting Gun Buyback Programs is “Goofy”

in News/politics
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By Laura Hancock, Cowboy State Daily

A bill submitted to the Wyoming Legislature would prevent cities, towns, counties and state agencies from initiating gun and ammunition buyback programs.

There hasn’t been a gun or ammo buyback program in Wyoming in recent memory, if ever.

But House Bill 28 comes at a time when buyback programs have been discussed and tried in other parts of the United States. Gun rights enthusiasts became concerned when Beto O’Rourke, the one-time Democratic presidential candidate, proposed a buyback of high-powered rifles.

“It’s not really a concern right now, but if it is ever a concern where organizations such as government — whether it’s local or state — are starting to do this in Wyoming, I want to make it as painful as possible to be able to peel back our pro-gun legislation,” said sponsor Rep. Tyler Lindholm, R-Sundance.

Sen. Hank Coe, R-Cody, said he agreed to co-sponsor the bill because he wants to protect the Second Amendment.

“My thinking on it, when I read the bill, is it’s a gun rights thing for me,” he said. “I don’t think government should get involved in going in and confiscating someone’s firearms under the Second Amendment.”

However, Rep. Sara Burlingame, D-Cheyenne, called the bill “goofy.”

She noted that the 2020 legislative session will be focused on the budget, and lawmakers are staring at diminishing revenues this year.

Non-budget legislation will need a vote of two-thirds of either the House or Senate before it can even be sent to a committee, a protocol designed to defeat many bills to keep the lawmakers focused on the two-year budget bill.

“I think our budget is in crisis,” Burlingame said. “We’re going into a budget session that’s meant to be all-hands-on-deck to deal with it. I would never question the motives of my colleagues who are sponsoring this, but I just don’t see the urgency for spending time in a budget year for a hypothetical crisis that seems very unlikely to occur.”

The legislative session begins Feb. 10.

Gun Control: Sara Burlingame OK with Sensible Gun Regulation

in News
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Much like we did with Representative Tyler Lindholm (R- Crook County) earlier this week, we sat down with Wyoming State Rep. Sara Burlingame (D-Laramie County) to discuss national gun control measures following the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton.

Burlingame says she believes the U.S. can and should adopt stricter gun regulations and these measures can make the country safer without infringing upon Second Amendment rights.

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