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Associated Press

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - Joe Meyer launched his bid for re-election as Secretary of State by saying he wants to continue to seek ways to improve the quality of life for Wyoming's residents.

"My family and I will campaign vigorously, just as we did during our first campaign in 1998," he said in a statement to be released Wednesday. "We love this state and want to contribute to its economic growth and the well-being of our friends, neighbors and fellow citizens through continued public service."

If re-elected, Meyer, a Republican, said he intends to increase electronic access to public documents, including online posting of candidate receipt and expenditure reports along with lobbyist reporting documents.

Meyer served eight years as attorney general under former Gov. Mike Sullivan and 16 years was assistant director of the Legislative Service Office, which he helped establish in 1971. The office functions as staff for the Legislature.

Among the main tasks of the secretary of state are investigating securities fraud, serving on various state boards and overseeing elections.

Unlike Florida's election, Wyoming's vote-counting went smoothly in 2000, Meyer said.

"Wyoming's election process has run smoothly for years, and the county clerks are to be commended for their hands-on administration of elections," he said. "The Wyoming Legislature has also played a significant role through the years. In fact, federal election officials have advised me that the Wyoming Election Code has been a model for other states in many regards."

Pursuing fraud might be one of his office's most important jobs, he said.

"Our Securities Division has investigated and worked with prosecutors to obtain indictments and convictions on securities fraud cases," he said.

The cases frequently are high-dollar, interstate cases involving Wyoming victims and sometimes millions of dollars, he said.

"Looking out for the interests of Wyoming citizens has been a career-spanning passion for me," Meyer said.

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He recently chastised the U.S. Postal Service for its decision to feature a bucking horse and ride, similar to Wyoming's trademark, on a stamp highlighting Montana.

"If Wyoming's private business owners lost the use of our trademark, the costs of paying another owner for the mark or removing it from their signs and products would be overwhelming," he said.

Meyer said he played a role in Buffalo Power Co.'s probe into superconductor technology to boost long-distance power transmission, which he said could be one way to expand Wyoming's electricity generation, entice new businesses and create more higher paying jobs.

He said his institutional memory from being involved in state government for over 30 years will continue to serve him as a member of the state Land Board, which manages the state's trust lands.

Meyer is the first candidate to announce a bid for the state's No. 2 office.

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