Former Campbell County Commissioner and Gillette City Councilman Stephen F. Hughes, 66, was found dead inside his business, Landmark Inc., early Friday morning, according to information released by …
CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Wyoming's Republican delegation to Congress won easy re-election and pledged to work to reduce federal spending and the nation's budget deficit.
Both U.S. Sen. John Barrasso and U.S. Rep. Cynthia Lummis said Tuesday's results underscored Wyoming voters' concerns about the economic state of the nation — "jobs, the economy, the debt and the spending," as Barrasso put it.
Barrasso won his first full, six-year Senate term, defeating Democrat Tim Chesnut of Laramie.
Lummis won her third term as Wyoming's sole U.S. House member, beating Democrat Chris Henrichsen of Casper.
Lummis served as chairman of Mitt Romney's Wyoming campaign. She said Tuesday she worked with Romney's running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., on the House Budget Committee and strongly supported his proposals for sharp cuts to federal spending.
Lummis said she also intends to work to create jobs by promoting U.S. energy production.
Henrichsen, a political science instructor at Casper College, criticized Lummis during the campaign over congressional action to cut federal Abandoned Mine Lands funding for Wyoming by more than $700 million over the next 10 years. Lummis said she expects Wyoming's congressional delegation to try to restore the funding.
"I believe that members of Congress will see the injustice of sending one state's money away from it, not to address budget issues and our deficit, but rather just to give it to somebody else," Lummis said.
She said she would feel differently about the issue if the funding cut were part of an overall federal belt-tightening effort to address the deficit.
Barrasso is a leading critic of the federal Affordable Care Act. He served as a state senator and worked as a surgeon in Casper before heading to Washington following the death of Sen. Craig Thomas in 2007.
Barrasso and Lummis raised far more money than their opponents and benefited also from a voter registration advantage of better than three-to-one statewide.
Barrasso raised $7.4 million, according to federal campaign reports. Lummis raised more than $500,000. Chesnut, an Albany County commissioner, said he spent $1,200 on his campaign. Henrichsen said he raised about $25,000.
"We did as much as we could, given our resources, and I feel that we were successful in doing that," Henrichsen said.
Chesnut said people were receptive to his advocacy of decriminalizing marijuana and cutting military spending.
"But it's tough to beat the machine when people are spending millions of dollars to get elected and I only had a little over $1,000," he said.
Republican Mitt Romney won Wyoming by a margin comparable to John McCain's 2-to-1 advantage over Barack Obama in 2008. Republicans also looked to expand their dominance of the statehouse, picking up two House seats in the traditional Democratic stronghold of Rock Springs.
Voters endorsed a state constitutional amendment that specifies competent adults have the right to make their own health care decisions. Voters also approved a second amendment that specifies that the state will preserve citizens' opportunity to hunt, fish and trap.