Dave Freudenthal

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Posted by pompos 03/25/2009 @ 18:12

Tags : dave freudenthal, wyoming, states, us

News headlines
Wyo. biologists study turbines' effect on grouse - Forbes
Dave Freudenthal's administration has worked to try to ensure protection of sage grouse habitat. His goal is to avert federal listing, which could have a stultifying affect on the state's lucrative oil-and-gas industry and other economic development....
What did EPA's Jackson see in Wyoming? - Charleston Gazette
Dave Freudenthal's Web site, but picked only the three that did'nt relate to coal. You can read some of the news coverage yourself: Here, here, here and here. I'll point out a couple of things that interested me. One that isn't directly coal-related,...
Tribune Eagle files suit against Governor - KGWN
Why wouldn't they allow us to see that?" KGWN did contact the Wyoming Attorney General bruce salzburg who declined to speak on camera, saying that he will have his say in court. Governor Dave Freudenthal's office did not return our calls on the...
Second 'Building the Wyo We Want' Conference set for June 9-10 - Wyoming Business Report
Dave Freudenthal has announced that the second statewide forum to talk about Wyoming's future will take place in Casper on June 9 and 10. The conference is open to the public and to state and local leaders. Registration is required as space is limited....
EPA Administrator Jackson Wraps Up Two Day Tour Of Wyoming Energy ... - All American Patriots (press release)
By admin - Posted on May 25th, 2009 May 21, 2009 -- CHEYENNE - US EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson and Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal today concluded a two day tour of several major energy production regions in Wyoming. Gov. Freudenthal invited the...
EPA chief to visit area coal mine, natural gas site - Gillette News Record
Dave Freudenthal during his last visit to Washington, DC, two months ago. Jackson was appointed as EPA administrator by President Barack Obama in January. She's known for her advocacy for reducing greenhouse gases and aggressively addressing pollution....
Wyoming Governor Nominates Wife for Judgeship - findingDulcinea
Dave Freudenthal has raised eyebrows for including his wife on a list of nominees to fill a judge's seat in federal court. Nancy Freudenthal would be the first female federal judge in Wyoming if she's chosen to fill the open seat, according to the...
Anschutz Corp. plans Wyoming wind farm - Forbes
Dave Freudenthal recently likened the interest in Wyoming wind development to a "gold rush." But it's difficult to predict just how the wind boom will play out. The American Wind Energy Association says the state's existing wind farms have a capacity...
EPA administrator tours Wyoming wind farm - Forbes
Dave Freudenthal, Jackson began a two-day tour of the state's energy industry at a wind farm near Cheyenne. On Thursday, Jackson will tour Wyoming coal and natural gas fields. Jackson, a Princeton University-educated chemical engineer, said the wind...
At a Glance: NEWS BRIEFS - Planet Jackson Hole
Governor Dave Freudenthal will address the summit, 12:30 pm, Friday. A presentation open to the public, Wednesday, in the Antler Inn meeting room, will include reviews and updates of ongoing projects, including the airport terminal enlargement,...

Dave Freudenthal

Dave Freudenthal

David Duane "Dave" Freudenthal (born October 12, 1950) is an American politician from the U.S. state of Wyoming. A Democrat, Freudenthal is currently the governor of Wyoming, having been re-elected to a second term on November 7, 2006.

Freudenthal was born in Thermopolis, the seat of Hot Springs County in north central Wyoming, the seventh of eight children, and grew up on a farm north of town. He graduated from Amherst College in 1973 with a bachelor's degree in economics. After graduating he joined the Department of Economic Planning and Development as an economist and later became the state planning director for Governor Edgar Herschler.

Freudenthal entered the University of Wyoming College of Law, receiving his law degree in 1980, and went into private practice. In 1994, he was appointed U.S. Attorney upon the recommendation of then-Governor Mike Sullivan. Freudenthal left the post of U.S. Attorney in May 2001.

During Freudenthal's term, Wyoming has enjoyed a prosperous economy. The petroleum, natural gas, and mineral boom in Wyoming have given the state a budget surplus, projected at $1.8 billion in 2006. Freudenthal has proposed that the state save $1.2 billion over the next two years. Freudenthal, who enjoys one of the highest approval ratings of any governor at around 68 percent, was endorsed by the National Rifle Association and reelected over the Republican Ray Hunkins in the 2006 Wyoming gubernatorial election, carrying every county in the state, most by landslide margins. As Governor, he is a member of the National Governors Association and the Democratic Governors Association. Dave Freudenthal is also the Chairman of the Western Governors Association. He also has come up in national political limelight, due to the late Senator Craig L. Thomas's death. He was designated to appoint a new U.S. Senator and chose John Barrasso. Freudenthal was rumoured to be a possible candidate in the 2008 special election to complete Thomas's term, but he declined to run.

He endorsed Senator Barack Obama of Illinois for President on April 2, 2008, having cited Obama's style of leadership and openness to discussion.

Freudenthal is married to Nancy D. Freudenthal, a native of Cody, who works as a private attorney in Cheyenne. They have four children: Donald, Hillary, Bret, and Katie.

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Wyoming

Map of the United States with Wyoming highlighted

The State of Wyoming ( /waɪˈoʊmɪŋ/ (help·info)) is a sparsely populated state in the northwestern region of the United States. The majority of the state is dominated by the mountain ranges and rangelands of the Rocky Mountain West, while the easternmost section of the state is a high altitude prairie region known as the High Plains. While the tenth largest U.S. state by size, Wyoming is the least populous, with a U.S. Census estimated population of 522,830 in 2007, a 5.9% increase since 2000. The capital and the most populous city of Wyoming is Cheyenne.

As specified in the designating legislation for the territory of Wyoming, the state is defined as a geoellipsoidal rectangle bounded by lines of latitude and longitude. Wyoming is only one of three states (along with Colorado and Utah) to have only lines of latitude and longitude for boundaries and that has no natural borders. In reality, due to survey errors during the 19th century, Wyoming's border deviates from the latitude or longitude lines by up to 1/2 mile (.8 km) in some spots, especially in the mountainous region along the 45th parallel. Wyoming is bordered on the north by Montana, on the east by South Dakota and Nebraska, on the south by Colorado, on the southwest by Utah, and on the west by Idaho. It is the tenth largest state in the United States in total area, containing 97,818 square miles (253,348 km²) and is made up of 23 counties. From the north border to the south border it is 276 miles (444 km); and from the east to the west border is 365 miles (587 km) at its south end and 342 miles (550 km) at the north end.

The Great Plains meet the Rocky Mountains in Wyoming. The state is a great plateau broken by a number of mountain ranges. Surface elevations range from the summit of Gannett Peak in the Wind River Mountain Range, at 13,804 feet (4,207 m), to the Belle Fourche River valley in the state’s northeast corner, at 3,125 feet (952 m). In the northwest are the Absaroka, Owl Creek, Gros Ventre, Wind River and the Teton ranges. In the north central are the Big Horn Mountains; in the northeast, the Black Hills; and in the southern region the Laramie, Snowy and Sierra Madre ranges.

The Snowy Range in the south central part of the state is an extension of the Colorado Rockies in both geology and appearance. The Wind River Range in the west central part of the state is remote and includes more than 40 mountain peaks in excess of 13,000 ft (4,000 m) tall in addition to Gannett Peak, the highest peak in the state. The Big Horn Mountains in the north central portion are somewhat isolated from the bulk of the Rocky Mountains.

The Teton Range in the northwest extends for 50 miles (80 km), part of which is included in Grand Teton National Park. The park includes the Grand Teton, the second highest peak in Wyoming.

The Continental Divide spans north-south across the central portion of the state. Rivers east of the divide drain into the Missouri River Basin and eventually the Atlantic Ocean. They are the North Platte, Wind, Big Horn and the Yellowstone rivers. The Snake River in northwest Wyoming eventually drains into the Columbia River and the Pacific Ocean, as does the Green River through the Colorado River Basin.

The continental divide forks in the south central part of the state in an area known as the Great Divide Basin where the waters that flow or precipitate into this area remain there and cannot flow to any ocean. Instead, because of the overall aridity of Wyoming, water in the Great Divide Basin simply sinks into the soil or evaporates.

Several rivers begin or flow through the state, including the Yellowstone River, Powder River, Green River, and the Snake River.

More than 48% of the land in Wyoming is owned by the U.S. Government, which ranks fifth in the US in both total acres owned by the Federal Government and by percentage of a state's land owned by the Federal government. This amounts to about 30,099,430 acres (121,808.1 km2) owned and managed by the U.S. Government. The state government owns an additional 6% of all Wyoming lands, or another 3,864,800 acres (15,640 km2).

The vast majority of this government land is managed by the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service in numerous National Forests, a National Grassland, and a number of vast swaths of public land.

Wyoming's climate is generally a semi-arid continental climate (Koppen climate classification BSk), which is drier and windier in comparison to most of the United States with temperature extremes. Much of this is due to the topography of the state. Summers in Wyoming are warm with July high temperatures averaging between 85 °F (29 °C) and 95 °F (35 °C) in most of the state. With increasing elevation, however, this average drops rapidly with locations above 9,000 feet (2,743 m) averaging around 70 °F (21 °C). Summer nights throughout the state are characterized by a rapid cooldown with even the hottest locations averaging in the 50-60 °F (10-14 °C) range at night. In most of the state, the late spring and early summer is when most of the precipitation tends to fall. Winters are cold, but are variable with periods of sometimes extreme cold interspersed between generally mild periods, with Chinook winds providing unusually warm temperatures in some locations. Wyoming is an arid state with much of the land receiving less than 10 inches (250 mm) of rainfall per year. Precipitation depends on elevation with lower areas in the Big Horn Basin averaging 5-8 inches (125 - 200 mm) (making the area nearly a true desert). The lower areas in the North and on the eastern plains typically average around 10-12 inches (250-300 mm), making the climate there semi-arid. Some mountain areas do receive a good amount of precipitation, 20 inches (510 mm) or more, much of it as snow, sometimes 200 inches (510 cm) or more annually.

The climate of any area in Wyoming is largely determined by its latitude, altitude and local topography. When put together, these factors have a lot to do with airflow patterns, temperature variations, precipitation and humidity brought in by the weather systems that migrate eastward. In winter, Wyoming is often beneath the jet stream, or north of it, which accounts for its frequent strong winds, blasts of Arctic air and precipitation, all the necessary ingredients for great snow conditions at Wyoming's northwestern ski areas. In summer, the jet stream retreats northward to Canada, leaving the state's weather mild and pleasant at a time when the majority of Wyoming's visitors choose to arrive. Jackson, located at 6,230 feet (1,899 m) above sea level and surrounded by mountains, can expect a high temperature in July of 80˚ F (26.6 °C). The average is more likely to be 65˚ F (18.3 °C). The closest National Weather Station (in Riverton on the other side of the Wind River Mountains at 4,955 feet (1,510 m)) reports slightly warmer July weather.

The number of thunderstorm days vary across the state with the southeastern plains of the state having the most days of thunderstorm activity. Thunderstorm activity in the state is highest during the late spring and early summer. The southeastern corner of the state is the most vulnerable part of the state to tornado activity. Moving away from that point and westwards, the incidence of tornadoes drops dramatically with the west part of the state showing little vulnerability. Tornadoes, where they occur, tend to be small and brief, unlike some of those which occur a little further east.

Several Native American groups originally inhabited the region now known as Wyoming. The Crow, Arapaho, Lakota, and Shoshone were but a few of the original inhabitants encountered when white explorers first entered the region. Although French trappers may have ventured into the northern sections of the state in the late 1700s, John Colter, a member of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, first described the region in 1807. His reports of the Yellowstone area were considered at the time to be fictional. Robert Stuart and a party of five men returning from Astoria discovered South Pass in 1812. The Oregon Trail later followed that route. In 1850, Jim Bridger located what is now known as Bridger Pass, which the Union Pacific Railroad used in 1868 — as did Interstate 80, ninety years later. Bridger also explored Yellowstone and filed reports on the region that, like those of Colter, were largely regarded as tall tales at the time.

The region may have acquired the name Wyoming as early as 1865, when Representative J. M. Ashley of Ohio introduced a bill to Congress to provide a "temporary government for the territory of Wyoming." The name Wyoming derives from the Munsee name xwé:wamənk, meaning "at the big river flat," originally applied to the Wyoming Valley in Pennsylvania, made famous by the 1809 poem Gertrude of Wyoming by Thomas Campbell.

After the Union Pacific Railroad reached the town of Cheyenne in 1867, the region's population began to grow steadily, and the Federal government established the Wyoming Territory on July 25, 1868. Unlike Colorado to the south, Wyoming enjoyed no significant discovery of such celebrated minerals as gold and silver — nor Colorado's consequent boom in population — although South Pass City experienced a short-lived boom after the Carissa Mine began producing gold in 1867. Moreover, some areas, such as between the Sierra Madre Mountains and the Snowy Range near Encampment, Wyoming, produced copper.

Once government sponsored expeditions to the Yellowstone country were undertaken, the previous reports by men like Colter and Bridger were found to be true. This led to the creation of Yellowstone National Park, which became the world's first National Park in 1872. Nearly all of Yellowstone National Park lies within the far northwestern borders of Wyoming.

Wyoming's constitution included women's suffrage and a pioneering article on water rights. The United States admitted Wyoming into the Union as the 44th state on July 10, 1890.

Wyoming was the location of the Johnson County War of 1892, which erupted between competing groups of cattle ranchers. The passage of the federal Homestead Act led to an influx of small ranchers. A range war broke out when either or both of the groups chose violent conflict over commercial competition in the use of the public land.

The center of population of Wyoming is located in Natrona County.

As of 2005, Wyoming had an estimated population of 509,294, which was an increase of 3,407, or 0.7%, from the prior year and an increase of 15,512, or 3.1%, since the 2000 census. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 12,165 people (that is 33,704 births minus 21,539 deaths) and an increase from net migration of 4,035 people into the state. Immigration from outside the United States resulted in a net increase of 2,264 people, and migration within the country produced a net increase of 1,771 people. In 2004, the foreign-born population was 11,000 (2.2%). In 2005, total births in Wyoming numbered 7,231 (Birth Rate of 14.04).

Wyoming is the least populous state of the United States (including the District of Columbia), and has the second lowest population density, behind Alaska.

The largest ancestry groups in Wyoming are: German (25.9%), English (15.9%), Irish (13.3%), American (6.5%), Norwegian (4.3%), and Swedish (3.5%).

The largest denominations by number of adherents in 2000 were the Roman Catholic Church with 80,421; the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with 47,129; and the Southern Baptist Convention with 17,101.

According to the 2005 U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis report, Wyoming’s gross state product was $27.4 billion. Wyoming’s unemployment rate for 2006 was approximately 3.3%, which was lower than the national average of 4.6%. Components of Wyoming's economy differ significantly from those of other states. The mineral extraction industry and the travel and tourism sector are the main drivers behind Wyoming’s economy. The Federal government owns about 50% of its landmass, while 6% is controlled by the state. Total taxable values of mining production in Wyoming for 2001 was over $6.7 billion. The tourism industry accounts for over $2 billion in revenue for the state.

In 2002, more than six million people visited Wyoming’s national parks and monuments. The key tourist attractions in Wyoming include Grand Teton National Park, Yellowstone National Park, Devils Tower National Monument and Fossil Butte National Monument. Each year Yellowstone National Park receives three million visitors.

Historically, agriculture has been an important component of Wyoming’s economy. Its overall importance to the performance of Wyoming’s economy has waned. However, agriculture is still an essential part of Wyoming’s culture and lifestyle. The main agricultural commodities produced in Wyoming include livestock (beef), hay, sugar beets, grain (wheat and barley), and wool. More than 91% of land in Wyoming is classified as rural.

Wyoming’s mineral commodities include coal, natural gas, coalbed methane, crude oil, uranium, and trona. In fiscal year 2002, Wyoming collected over $48 million in sales taxes from the mining industry.

Unlike most other states, Wyoming does not levy an individual or corporate income tax. In addition, Wyoming does not assess any tax on retirement income earned and received from another state. Wyoming has a state sales tax of 4%. Counties have the option of collecting an additional 1% tax for general revenue and a 2% tax for specific purposes, if approved by voters. Food for human consumption is not subject to sales tax. There also is a county lodging tax that varies from 2% to 5%. The state collects a use tax of 5% on items purchased elsewhere and brought into Wyoming. All property tax is based on the assessed value of the property and Wyoming's Department of Revenue's Ad Valorem Tax Division supports, trains, and guides local government agencies in the uniform assessment, valuation and taxation of locally assessed property. "Assessed value" means taxable value; "taxable value" means a percent of the fair market value of property in a particular class. Statutes limit property tax increases. For county revenue, the property tax rate cannot exceed 12 mills (or 1.2%) of assessed value. For cities and towns, the rate is limited to 8 mills (0.8%). With very few exceptions, state law limits the property tax rate for all governmental purposes.

Personal property held for personal use is tax-exempt. Inventory if held for resale, pollution control equipment, cash, accounts receivable, stocks and bonds are also exempt. Other exemptions include property used for religious, educational, charitable, fraternal, benevolent and government purposes and improvements for handicapped access. Minerals are exempt from property tax but companies must pay a gross products tax and a severance tax when produced. Underground mining equipment is tax exempt.

Wyoming does not collect inheritance taxes. Because of the phase-out of the federal estate tax credit, Wyoming's estate tax is not imposed on estates of persons who died in 2005. There is limited estate tax related to federal estate tax collection.

In 2008 the Tax Foundation ranked Wyoming as having the single most "business friendly" tax climate of all 50 states.

Three interstate highways and nine U.S. highways pass through Wyoming. In addition, the state is served by the Wyoming state highway system.

Interstate 25 enters the state south of Cheyenne and runs north, intersecting Interstate 80 in Cheyenne. It passes through Casper and ends at Interstate 90 near Buffalo. Interstate 80 crosses the Utah border west of Evanston and runs east through the southern half of the state, passing through Cheyenne before entering Nebraska near Pine Bluffs. Interstate 90 comes into Wyoming near Parkman and cuts through the northern part of the state. It serves Gillette and enters South Dakota east of Sundance. In addition, Interstate 180 services Cheyenne, and not only is it the only three-digit interstate highway in the state, it is the only non-freeway in the country that is signed as an interstate.

The U.S. highways that pass through the state are U.S. Highways 14, 16, 20, 26, 30, 89, 189, 191, and 287.

The Wind River Reservation is shared by the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes of Native Americans in the central western portion of the state near Lander. It is the seventh-largest Indian reservation in the United States, with a land area of 8,995.733 km² (3,473.272 sq mi), encompassing most of Fremont County. The reservation is home to 2,500 Eastern Shoshone and 5,000 Northern Arapaho.

Chief Washakie established the reservation in 1868 as the result of negotiations with the federal government in the Fort Bridger Treaty. However, the Northern Arapaho were forced onto the Shoshone reservation in 1876 by the federal government after the government failed to provide a promised separate reservation.

Today the Wind River Indian Reservation is jointly owned, with each tribe having a 50% interest in the land, water, and other natural resources. The reservation is a sovereign, self-governed land with two independent governing bodies: the Eastern Shoshone Tribal Government and the Northern Arapaho Tribal Government. The Eastern Shoshone Business Council meets jointly with the Northern Arapaho Business Council as the Joint Business Council to decide matters that affect both tribes. Six elected council members from each tribe serve on the joint council.

Wyoming's Constitution established three branches of government: the executive, legislative, and judicial branches.

The Wyoming state legislature comprises a House of Representatives with 60 members and a Senate with 30 members.

The executive branch is headed by the governor and includes a secretary of state, auditor, treasurer and superintendent of public instruction. Wyoming does not have a lieutenant governor. Instead the secretary of state stands first in the line of succession.

Wyoming's sparse population warrants it only a solitary seat in the US House of Representatives, and hence only three votes in the electoral college. Its low population renders Wyoming voters effectively more powerful in presidential elections than those in more populous states. For example, while Montana had a 2000 census population of 902,195 to Wyoming's 493,782, they both have the same number of electoral votes.

Wyoming is an alcoholic beverage control state.

Wyoming's highest court is the Supreme Court of Wyoming, with five justices presiding over appeals from the state's lower courts. Wyoming is unusual in that it does not have an intermediate appellate court, like most states. This is largely attributable to the state's size and correspondingly lower caseload. Appeals from the state district courts go directly to the Wyoming Supreme Court. Wyoming also has state circuit courts (formerly county courts), of limited jurisdiction, which handle certain types of cases, such as civil claims with lower dollar amounts, misdemeanor criminal offenses, and felony arraignments. Circuit court judges also commonly hear small claims cases as well. All state court judges in Wyoming are nominated by the Judicial Nominating Commission and appointed by the Governor. They are then subject to a retention vote by the electorate.

Wyoming has historically been a conservative, Republican state. Its congressional delegation in Washington comprises its two Senators, Mike Enzi and John Barrasso, and its one member of the House of Representatives, Congresswoman Cynthia Lummis. All three are Republicans. The state has not voted for a Democrat for president since 1964, one of only five times since statehood. There are only two reliably Democratic counties in the state: Teton and Albany County. In the 2004 presidential election, George W. Bush won his second-largest victory, with 69% of the vote. Former Vice President Dick Cheney is a Wyoming resident and represented the state in Congress from 1979 to 1989. However, after his term, he resided primarily in Texas, a fact that drew mild criticism from his political opponents when he changed his voter registration back to Wyoming prior to joining George W. Bush's ticket in the 2000 Presidential election.

Republicans are no less dominant at the state level. They have held a majority in the state senate continuously since 1936 and in the state house since 1964. However, Democrats have held the governorship for all but eight years since 1975. Democrat Dave Freudenthal was elected in 2002 and has one of the highest approval ratings of any governor in the USA.

The State of Wyoming has 23 counties.

In 2005, 52.4% of Wyomingites lived in one of the five most populous Wyoming counties.

The State of Wyoming has 98 incorporated municipalities.

In 2005, 50.6% of Wyomingites lived in one of the 13 most populous Wyoming municipalities.

The United States Census Bureau has defined two Metropolitan Statistical Areas and seven Micropolitan Statistical Areas for the State of Wyoming.

In 2005, 30.4% of Wyomingites lived in either of the Metropolitan Statistical Areas, and 73% lived in either a Metropolitan Statistical Area or a Micropolitan Statistical Area.

Public education is directed by the state superintendent of public instruction, an elected state official. Educational policies are set by the State Board of Education, a nine-member board appointed by the governor. The constitution prohibits the state from establishing curriculum and text book selections; these are the prerogatives of local school boards. The Wyoming School for the Deaf was the only in-state school dedicated to supporting deaf students in Wyoming, but it closed in summer of 2000.

Wyoming has one public four-year institution, the University of Wyoming in Laramie. In addition, there are seven two-year community colleges spread through the state.

Prior to the passing of a new law in 2006, Wyoming had hosted unaccredited institutions, many of them suspected diploma mills. The 2006 law is forcing unaccredited institutions to make one of three choices, move out of Wyoming, close down, or apply for accreditation. The Oregon State Office of Degree Authorization predicts that in a few years the problem of diploma mills residing in Wyoming might be resolved.

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Electoral reform in Wyoming

Electoral reform in Wyoming refers to efforts to change the voting laws in this U.S. state. Because Wyoming has only one Congressional district, gerrymandering is not a consideration in federal races. In March 2003, Governor Dave Freudenthal signed a bill to allow people convicted of a non-violent first-time felony to apply for restoration of voting rights five years after completion of sentence. Wyoming also has a "no-excuse" absentee ballot policy, meaning that citizens need not provide a reason for requesting an absentee ballot.

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United States Senate elections in Wyoming, 2008

Wyomingstateseal.jpg

The Wyoming United States Senate elections for 2008 were held on November 4, 2008. The simultaneous elections resulting from the death of Senator Craig L. Thomas in 2007 marked a rarity in United States Senate elections, in which both seats were up for election simultaneously. The last instance of this was in Kansas in 1996; Oregon had a similar situation that year, though the elections were held on different dates. It also occurred in Mississippi, where Senator Trent Lott's 2007 retirement forced a special election.

The seats that were up for election were those held by incumbent Mike Enzi, a Senator from Senate Class II, who was last elected in 2002, and by John Barrasso, who was appointed to succeed Thomas, from Class I.

This was a special election, so designated because it filled the remainder of the unexpired Senate term of the late Craig L. Thomas, which began on January 3, 2007. John Barrasso was appointed by Governor Dave Freudenthal to succeed Thomas. Barrasso ran unopposed for the Republican nomination to serve the remainder of Thomas's term. Speculation about potential Republican challengers had included the other finalists to succeed Thomas, Cynthia Lummis and Tom Sansonetti; as well as former state House Speaker Randall Luthi, and former U.S. Attorney Matt Mead.

Democrats Keith Goodenough, a former state senator, and Nick Carter, a Gillette attorney, sought their party's nomination. Governor Dave Freudenthal, former Governor Mike Sullivan, State Senator Mike Massie and Paul Hickey, Cheyenne lawyer and son of former Wyoming Governor John J. Hickey, who came second to Freudenthal in the 2002 gubernatorial primary, all were considered potential candidates for the Democratic nomination, but all four declined.

This was a regular election for a full, six-year term, beginning January 3, 2009. After months of speculation as to whether he would run again, incumbent Mike Enzi formally announced on April 26, 2008 that he would run for re-election. Chemical engineer, diplomat and university instructor Chris Rothfuss easily won the Democratic primary against perennial candidate Al Hamburg. CQ Politics ranked the race as 'Safe Republican'.

Chris Rothfuss is a chemical engineer, nanotechnologist, diplomat and university instructor. He was the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senator from Wyoming, running on a platform of sustainable energy policies, defending constitutional rights, and restoring fiscal responsibility to the federal government.

He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies in 1994 at the University of Wyoming, presenting his Honors thesis on sustainable development. He was captain of the UW Debate Team in his senior year. In 1996 he earned a Master of Science degree in Chemical Engineering, researching the use of a spent tire and waste oil derived carbonous residue as an asphalt modifier. In 2002 he completed his Ph.D in Chemical Engineering at the University of Washington and defended his dissertation entitled The Influence of High Electric Fields on Water and Methanol Surface Electrochemistry. He concurrently earned his Master of Science Degree in Applied Physics, and received the McCarthy Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award.

In 1997 Rothfuss began working for Chemical Tracers, Inc. (CTI), an oilfield service company based in Laramie, evaluating enhanced oil recovery programs and existing oil reserves. Dr. Rothfuss worked on the North Slope of Alaska, in Lake Maracaibo, Venezuela, off the coast of Brazil and in the Elk Hills Oil Field of California.

Rothfuss was selected as a Science and Technology Diplomacy Fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). From 2003 through 2006, he served in the United States Department of State, first in the Office of Science and Technology Policy as an adviser to the Secretary, and then in the Office of Space and Advanced Technology. He was the senior nanotechnology advisor for the Department, and a U.S. delegate to the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) (website). He was also responsible for providing expert scientific advice and analysis to aid in the development of U.S. foreign policy for a wide range of issues, including remote sensing, missile technology export control, and advanced energy technologies. As nanotechnology advisor, he represented U.S. interests in bilateral and multilateral meetings and negotiations, and coordinated U.S. foreign policy on nanotechnology-related issues, in cooperation with other federal agencies and the intelligence community. He served as the first chairman of the Global Issues in Nanotechnology (GIN) Working Group of the NSTC Nanoscale Science, Engineering and Technology (NSET) Subcommittee, and was the Department’s representative to the NSET itself. As a U.S. delegate to the UN COPUOS, and the UN COPUOS Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, Dr. Rothfuss was a member of the Space Debris and Space Nuclear Power groups, working to develop international guidelines and agreements that will help to preserve safe access to space for all countries.

Rothfuss is currently at the University of Wyoming, teaching courses on Diplomacy and Negotiations through the Political Science and International Studies Departments, and Nanotechnology through the University Honors Program. His wife, Dr. Heather Rothfuss, is a chemical engineering research scientist at the University. They have two children.

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Source : Wikipedia