Republican gubernatorial candidate Foster Friess opened his state headquarters in a modest office in a modest strip mall near the west Casper Walmart on Monday.

"We just think Casper represents so much of where we can find the opportunities to grow and expand because it wants to grow," Friess said.

Cheyenne struggles with not wanting to be Fort Collins, Colo., he said.

Jackson has the problem that it can't grow because any new employer moving there must provide housing for its employees, he added.

"Casper has kind of a spirit and a dynamic that can be the center of all of our activities throughout the whole state," Friess said.

Friess, who made his millions in finance and lives in Jackson, welcomed those who wanted signs, talked to those who stopped by, swapped stories with his wife Lynn, and offered pizza for all.

While the headquarters is modest, his political machine is anything but.

Friess has tapped into some of the most sophisticated political data technology of the dominant force behind conservative republican politics.

For example, Friess introduced some of his campaign staff including Jon Parker.

"Jon is coming from i360, which is a manifestation of the Koch brothers who came up with the process of how do you target which doors you knock on and who you call, because they know exactly how many times you voted, if you're Democrats or Republicans," he said. "It's that data processing. So he's a key part and he's going to be here for the next two months."

Even so, Friess has his work cut out for him because he faces five other GOP candidates seeking their party's nomination in the Aug. 21 primary.

They are State Treasurer Mark Gordon, Cheyenne attorney Harriet Hageman, Cheyenne businessman Sam Galeotos, retired physician and businessman Taylor Haynes, and Sheridan businessman Bill Dahlin.

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