Lawmaker expects fight over smoking ban

Laramie, WYo. – A state representative from Sheridan says he expects a vigorous debate at the Capitol over a proposed statewide smoking ban.

A committee endorsed the bill this week. The full legislature will discuss it in January. Republican Representative Jack Landon was one of three lawmakers on the committee who voted against the endorsement.

He says lawmakers felt compelled to move it forward because the committee's duty is to protect the health of Wyoming citizens. But Landon says that does not mean the bill will go uncontested at the Capitol.

"I think its going to get a vigorous debate and I think it could be a contentious issue," he says. "We have some new people coming into the Legislature, so it's difficult to predict the outcome."

Landon says the ban is an example of too much government interference. He says the bill gained more attention this year because of a strong lobbying effort by the American Cancer Society.

"The advocates of this proposal are very well organized and they have expertly coordinated a group effort to get that message across to the Legislature."