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By Matt Manda

Wyoming has long been a safe haven for the firearm industry. Businesses understand a strong belief in the Second Amendment is in the DNA of Wyoming residents and has been so since before the state’s founding.

Republican Gov. Mark Gordon attended SHOT Show 2022 to ensure firearm industry businesses understand that as well. Several already call the Cowboy State home, but Gov. Gordon’s goal was to make sure businesses in less-firearm friendly states know they’re welcome in Wyoming too.

“Wyoming is just a great place…there’s lots of great hunting. There’s so many great locations for target shooting. It’s a family kind of tradition,” Gov. Gordon said. “People recognize that and obviously we’ve had some great leadership… People saw the business-friendly environment we have and said, ‘This is the way we ought to do business.’”

Wyoming is already home to nearly 1,500 firearm and ammunition industry jobs with an economic impact north of $300 million in 2021. That includes some industry heavy hitters.

Magpul Industries left Boulder, Colorado, and moved production to Laramie County, Wyo. Weatherby Inc.’s Adam Weatherby announced at SHOT Show 2018 he was moving the company from California to Sheridan, Wyo., a move that is now complete. Accessories maker HiViz announced in 2013 they were leaving Fort Collins, Colorado, for Laramie as well. Stag Arms announced in 2019 they were opening their new facility in Cheyenne. Those are great victories but for Gov. Gordon the work isn’t done.

Under Gov. Gordon’s leadership, Wyoming was included in the top 10 states in 2021 for firearm industry job growth per capita, as well as top 10 states for growth in economic output. For Gov. Gordon, that’s the Wyoming Way.

“I think it’s important that businesses and people recognize that we’re always going to be able to let people use personal responsibility, let people use their own judgement. We’re not going to try and regulate things out of business or existence,” Gov. Gordon said. “You know, firearms are something – and this is for my wife, my kids – everyone should know how to use a firearm.”

Regarding hunting and shooting sports traditions, Gov. Gordon doesn’t hold punches.

“I will say, with Wyoming I’ll put us up against anybody, in terms of opportunities for big game hunting. Anywhere you go in the state, it’s just fabulous,” the governor remarked. “One of the greatest things about Wyoming is just the accessibility. The ability to get out there and find that great hunt, find those great opportunities.”

His message to firearm industry businesses considering a move to friendlier skies, or Second Amendment-loving Americans thinking of moving into a state that loves the Second Amendment as much as they do, Gov. Gordon was unequivocal.

“We’re going to keep standing and protecting those Second Amendment rights. That’s fundamental. And we’ll keep pushing that right until the end of my days.”

Watch the full SHOT TV Quick Hit interview with Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon here.

 

Matt Manda is Manager, Public Affairs for the National Shooting Sports Foundation

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6 COMMENTS

  1. Protecting the Second amendment is great.

    But we need something more. Enforce it as if it was law. Lo and behold, the US Constitution says it is indeed the Supreme Law of the land. Enforce it against government over reach, such as ATF or FBI agents within your state’s borders, or third party operators and actors working at the behest of government officials.

    Infringing where there shall not be infringement must come with a severe penalty with a realistic chance of being imposed and carried out.

    Not sure how many ATF agents carry out unconstitutional activities in Wyoming, but for each and everyone, those agents acting in bad faith in regards to their oath to defend the Constitution from enemies domestically should be in a Wyoming prison.

  2. Magpul manufacturing is actually located in Cheyenne (where I live), not Laramie, unless they’ve got a second site there I hadn’t heard of. But in any case, Wyoming is definitely one of the most gun-friendly spaces on the planet. Truck guns and open carry are common, even seen the latter a few times in the public areas of local government buildings. I work for the County Gov’t here, and one feature of the standard employee benefits package is reduced membership rates at the County-owned and operated shooting range. And that’s in the most densely-populated county in the State, too. No deep Blue swamps here, lol!

  3. I’m jealous. Gov. Mark Gordon is the exact opposite of New Jersey Governor Phil (“I never met a gun-control bill I didn’t like”) Murphy.

  4. The Second Amendment makes sure that all the other Amendments are protected. Our Founding Fathers understood that words are meaningless unless ‘We the People’ have the ways and means to back it up with force if need be. The Second Amendment is a very somber, stark warning to would-be tyrants that gives the American people the RIGHT AND DUTY to defend their freedoms with force of arms. It ain’t about hunting. That’s why the Communists are so adamant about trying to get rid of it. In the end, the Second Amendment is the only thing standing in their way of turning America into a dictatorship.

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