Portions of Sublette County, which lost population, were lopped off House District 22, pictured, when lawmakers redrew the lines on electoral districts during the Wyoming Legislature’s 2022 budget session. (Courtesy/Wyoming Secretary of State’s Office)

The 66th Wyoming Legislature was made up of 79 Republicans, nine Democrats and just two members from a minor party or with no party ties. 

One of those was Rep. Marshall Burt (L-Green River), a Libertarian from Sweetwater County.Then, seated in the corner of the House floor, there was Rep. Jim Roscoe (I-Wilson), the Legislature’s only independent. After two terms in the Legislature (2009 to 2012 and 2019 to the present), Roscoe declined to run again and is on his way out. 

Despite losing its only independent, there’s a chance the soon-to-be 93-member Wyoming Legislature will pick up additional minor party and/or unaffiliated elected officials. Voters around the Equality State will find seven independents, seven Libertarians and three Constitution Party candidates on their general election ballots — the highest number of minor-party and unaffiliated candidates in a quarter century. One of those candidates is Bob Strobel, an independent who’s on the ballot to replace Roscoe in House District 22. He’s up against Andrew Byron, a moderate Republican candidate who the Wyoming GOP voted to financially support.

District: 

House District 22 is an amalgamation of disparate swaths of Wyoming. It includes super-wealthy, left-leaning Wilson and other southern swaths of Jackson Hole. Its southernmost reaches are another world: more-centrist Hoback Junction is part of the district, and so is right-leaning northern Star Valley, home to working ranches and small communities like Alpine, parts of Etna and Star Valley Ranch. Bondurant and Daniel Junction used to be included, but redistricting recently changed that. The northwest portion of Sublette County was lopped off because the population slipped and the district now stops at the Sublette County line.

Who’s running:

Byron, who has self-identified as a “super moderate” Republican, is a Hoback Junction resident, real estate agent and volunteer firefighter who unsuccessfully ran for a Teton County Board of County Commission seat in 2018. Byron has received $2,500 from the Wyoming Realtors PAC and the Wyoming Republican Party voted to send him another $2,000 at its central committee’s September meeting.

House District 22 Candidate Andrew Byron, a Republican, at an October 2022 debate in Wilson. (Loring Woodman/WyoFile)

At an Oct. 11 debate in Wilson, Byron said he did not ask for Wyoming GOP funding and that he hasn’t seen it. “I wonder if that check ever will arrive, because I’ve come out as a very moderate Republican,” Byron said. “I have a large issue with the former president.”

Though running as an independent, Strobel has historically identified as a “Republican classic” kind of guy, he said at the Wilson debate.

House District 22 Candidate Bob Strobel, an independent, at an October 2022 debate in Wilson. (Loring Woodman/WyoFile)

The newcomer to politics and resident of Etna has a techy, entrepreneurial background, having founded a webcam website, SeeJH.com, and the brick-and-mortar store, Jackson Hole Computer Clinic. He’s trailing Byron in funding, having raised only $1,800, according to the secretary of state’s website. Outgoing representative Roscoe has thrown his support behind Strobel, who struck the same tone as Byron on many issues while the two debated, whether it was local control over land-use planning, public land policy or abortion — both are pro-choice. 

What to watch for: 

There’s not a lot separating Byron and Strobel ideologically or in terms of policy positions, and their parallels might make for a close race in House District 22. Byron has said as much, telling the Jackson Hole News&Guide their similarities “might be difficult for both of us.” 

As a part of our ongoing coverage of the 2022 election, WyoFile is keeping an eye on notable legislative races across the state. Follow our Legislative Races to Watch series here. —Ed

Mike Koshmrl

Mike Koshmrl reports from Jackson on state politics and Wyoming's natural resources. Prior to joining WyoFile, he spent nearly a decade covering the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem’s wild places and creatures...

Join the Conversation

2 Comments

Want to join the discussion? Fantastic, here are the ground rules: * Provide your full name — no pseudonyms. WyoFile stands behind everything we publish and expects commenters to do the same. * No personal attacks, profanity, discriminatory language or threats. Keep it clean, civil and on topic. *WyoFile does not fact check every comment but, when noticed, submissions containing clear misinformation, demonstrably false statements of fact or links to sites trafficking in such will not be posted. *Individual commenters are limited to three comments per story, including replies.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. My understanding is that a Republican who accepts money from the State party agrees to vote in accord with the Republican platform. The first plank says they support life “from conception to natural death.” So how can Bryon be pro-choice?

  2. Voting is a blunt tool, but still the best chance for the public to direct how they are governed. When candidates don’t provide distinct differences in policy positions the voters are deprived of their ability to express their wishes at the ballot box.