CHEYENNE – Wyoming’s State Capitol went to the dogs today – literally. With the Capitol Rotunda filled with very well-behaved dogs, Gov. Dave Freudenthal signed legislation making dog fighting – and other animal fighting – a felony in Wyoming.
Wyoming was the last state in the nation to make dog fighting a felony, and some legislators reluctantly went along with the measure so that Wyoming would not in effect invite dogfighters to the state by being the only state with weak laws on animal fighting.
But Rep. Rosie Berger, R-Sheridan, has been championing the cause for several years, and she said she made it a priority “to help these animals that do not have a voice.”
She said fighting animal abuse has been one of the highlights of her legislative career.
“This really is Rep. Berger’s day,” Freudenthal said in signing the bill. A copy of the bill was signed by a paw print from one of the dogs.
The governor also signed two other highly visible bills passed during the session – measures defining and regulating carbon capture and carbon sequestration. He called them “landmark pieces of legislation” and said they are “the most comprehensive and most thorough pieces passed by any legislature in the country.”
Rep. Tom Lubnau, R-Gillette, the prime sponsor of the bills, called them a “forward-thinking approach to protect both Wyoming’s economy and Wyoming’s environment.”
“Whether you believe in global warming or not, the political and economic realities have changed, and Wyoming needs to adapt with those changes,” Lubnau said. “With the signing of these two bills today, Wyoming puts itself in the forefront of carbon sequestration legislation.”
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