(Gillette News Record) A Campbell County state legislator has withdrawn a controversial bill he’d proposed on firearms reporting for national background checks.

Rep. Bill Pownall, a Republican who serves on the Judiciary Committee, has withdrawn House Bill 59 from consideration in the state Legislature’s 24-day budget session that starts Monday.

The bill and its sponsor have been the target of much criticism on social media since it came up for introduction. It would have had to receive a two-thirds majority vote in the House just to be considered, which was seen as unlikely to happen.

On Thursday, Pownall released a statement saying he’d effectively killed the measure and hopes to have a more robust discussion about the proposal at a later time.

At the same time, he thought the controversy was unwarranted because others were misreading the bill.

“As a Wyoming native, gun owner and law enforcement officer of 38 years, I’ve been a staunch defender of the Second Amendment my entire life,” the former Campbell County sheriff said in the statement.

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