Wyoming Democrats, Republicans tackle civility during discourse at Governor's Business Forum

Thu, 2019-11-14

By Ellen Fike, For the Wyoming Tribune Eagle

CHEYENNE – Erin Taylor joked that there were movie stars present in the Little America Hotel and Resort ballroom early Wednesday afternoon during the Governor’s Business Forum.

She was preparing the guests, around 600 in attendance, to watch a 20-minute pilot episode of “High Noon in America,” a planned series that will show two conversations between two sets of people with opposing political and ideological viewpoints.

One of the major points of the episode was how people with different points of view can still be civil toward each other during discussions.

The first episode was shot in Wyoming and featured appearances by former U.S. Rep. Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyo.; state Rep. Tyler Lindholm, R-Sundance; Teton County Commissioner Natalia Macker and University of Wyoming professor Jacquelyn Bridgeman.

In the episode, the four are featured at their homes, talking about why they have certain beliefs and their background as a Democrat or Republican. Then, Bridgeman and Lummis, and Lindholm and Macker had one-on-one conversations at the Historic Governors’ Mansion about certain topics, like safe spaces, the electoral college and the federal government.

“Life doesn’t have any safe spaces,” Lummis said to Bridgeman. “If I was at a football game and someone came up and began to tear into me for my views, would I be able to put my hands up and say that this was a safe space and I was off-limits?”

Bridgeman responded that Lummis was also a public figure, unlike the majority of people who discuss wanting a safe space.

Macker and Lindholm delved into their beliefs about the federal government and taxes. Lindholm stated that he felt the government was too invasive, while Macker believed it allowed people to have a chance to be heard by elected officials. Lindholm also noted that he didn’t like federal income taxes, and the two discussed whether people in a higher tax bracket should pay more in taxes.