Bruce A. Salzburg

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Bruce A. Salzburg
Placeholder image.png
Do you have a photo that could go here? Submit it for this profile by emailing us!
Attorney General of Wyoming
Former officeholder
In office
PredecessorPatrick J. Crank
Elections and appointments
AppointedAugust 2007
Appointed byGovernor Dave Freudenthal
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Senior Assistant Attorney General
Bachelor'sUniversity of Miami (FL)
J.D.University of Miami (FL)
Military service
Service/branchU.S. Army Security Agency
Date of birth1947
Place of birthMassachusetts
Bruce A. Salzburg (born 1947) is a former Democratic Attorney General of Wyoming. He was appointed to the position by Governor Dave Freudenthal in August 2007.[1]


  • Bachelor's degree, University of Miami (1972) in economics
  • Juris Doctorate degree, University of Miami (1975)

Professional experience

Salzburg served with the United States Army Security Agency in West Berlin at the height of the Cold War from 1965 to 1969. Shortly after completing his law degree, he took up the position as senior assistant attorney general in Wyoming for four years beginning 1979, practically running the day-to-day operations of the office.

EEOC v. Wyoming (1983)

Near the end of his career as a senior assistant to the Wyoming Attorney General's office, Salzburg represented the state in a case against the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that appeared before the United States Supreme Court in 1982. A suit was brought against the state of Wyoming after a supervisor for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department who was forced to retire at the age of fifty-five in accordance with a Wyoming statute filed a complaint with EEOC. The EEOC filed the lawsuit against the state of Wyoming, arguing that the state's statute violated the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) of 1967 which made it illegal for any employer to discriminate against an employee or potential employee between the ages of 40 and 70 on the basis of age, the sole exception to this being "where age is a bona fide occupational qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the particular business, or where the differentiation is based on reasonable factors other than age."[2] The definition of "employer" in the legislation was expanded in 1974 to include both state and local governments.

In a five-to-four decision delivered on March 2, 1983, the opinion of the Supreme Court, delivered by Justice William J. Brennan, Jr., declared that the extension of the ADEA to include state and local governments was indeed "a valid exercise of Congress' powers under the Commerce Clause, both on its face and as applied in this case, and is not precluded by virtue of external constraints imposed on Congress' commerce powers by the Tenth Amendment."[2]

Political issues

Gun rights

  • Salzburg was one of twenty-three State Attorneys General that signed a petition on June 11, 2009, calling upon United States Attorney General Eric Holder to oppose a renewal of the 1994 Clinton administration’s ban on semiautomatic firearms, erroneously dubbed "assault weapons."[3]
  • The top law enforcer of Wyoming was one of two state attorneys general, the other being South Dakota, that joined Utah in filing an amicus brief expressing support for a disputed Montana law known as the "Firearms Freedom Act" that "exempts firearms made and sold in the same state from federal regulation."[4][5] This law, along with similar legislation in other states, has been challenged by the federal government in federal district court who argues that this interpretation of the Interstate Commerce Clause is incorrect. Four other states - Alabama, Idaho, South Carolina, and West Virginia - all later followed suit.[6]

Healthcare reform

See also: State Attorneys General Against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010

Speaking to reporters at a press conference the day after President Barack Obama signed into law his controversial health care reform bill, the one that narrowly passed the United States House of Representatives just two days before, Democrat Governor Dave Freudenthal said Salzburg would not be joining thirteen other state attorneys general in a suit against the federal government opposing the measure. His reasoning behind this decision was, he said, based on the fact that "they have plenty of plaintiffs and plenty of lawyers and when the Supreme Court rules, whichever way they rule, it still affects Wyoming."[7]

Other roles

  • Member, American Inns of Court
  • Member, Defense Research Institute
  • Member, Wyoming Trial Lawyers Association


Salzburg currently resides in Cheyenne, Wyoming with his wife, Phyllis. They have two children together.

Contact Information

Capitol Address:
Attorney General's Office
123 Capitol Building
200 W. 24th Street
Cheyenne, WY 82002


Phone: (307) 777-7841
Fax: (307) 777-6869 FAX

External links

Suggest a link


Political offices
Preceded by
Patrick J. Crank
Wyoming Attorney General
Succeeded by
Greg Phillips