CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — The governor of Wyoming has announced his support for a proposed ballot measure that would instruct commissioners in a rural Colorado county to explore becoming part of Wyoming.
Republican Gov. Mark Gordon said on Monday during an interview on KOA News Radio that he supported the push in Weld County to secede from Colorado, the Casper Star-Tribune reported.
“We would love that,” Gordon said. “From time to time states have said, ‘Gosh, we like what Wyoming is doing,’ and we’d be happy.”
The county just east of Fort Collins has a population of more than 324,000 people.
“People are scared here,” Todd Richards, creator of the 5,000-member “Weld County Wyoming” Facebook group, said in an interview with KGAB Radio last year. Some advocates have said the proposed move reflects their conservative politics.
In 2019, Weld County commissioner and Republican state Sen. Vicki Marble became the first elected officials to publicly entertain a motion to secede over concerns that lawmakers were not considering the needs of their rural constituents.
“It is my way to let the people know I hear their concerns and that I am not shying away from their voice and that I acknowledge the serious consequences of bills and discussions we are having at the Capitol,” Marble told the Greeley Tribune at the time.
An actual move to secede would need approval from the Colorado and Wyoming legislatures before going to the U.S. Congress for consideration.