Numerous officials and legal experts sounded off on New Mexico’s Friday public health decree that bans firearm possession in certain areas of the state.
Democratic New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced the order, made through the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH), to ban non-law enforcement personnel from carrying firearms in certain areas, either openly or concealed, regardless of whether any individual gun owner has a permit to carry. The public health decree will remain in effect for 30 days, but numerous experts and officials assert that the policy is unconstitutional.
“The order, in my view, is flagrantly unconstitutional under existing Second Amendment precedent,” conservative legal pundit Jonathan Turley opined. “If not found moot at the end of the period, New Mexico could supply a vehicle to curtail future public health rationales.”
“This is completely unconstitutional. It’s also just logically nuts,” Amy Swearer, senior legal fellow for the Heritage Foundation, said of the public health order. “Concealed carry permit holders aren’t the ones driving gun crime, and now you’re telling actual criminals that they have free reign because their victims can’t be armed.”
Grisham has championed several bills that would have restricted firearms in her state, but legislation that would have instituted a 14-day wait period to buy guns and raise the minimum age for purchasing semi-automatic weapons have not advanced substantially, according to the NM Political Report.
The decree applies to Albuquerque, the state’s largest city, and Bernalillo County, according to the Santa Fe New Mexican.
“As the elected sheriff, I have reservations regarding this order,” wrote Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen. “While I understand and appreciate the urgency, the temporary ban challenges the foundation of our Constitution, which I swore an oath to uphold. I am wary of placing my deputies in positions that could lead to civil liability conflicts, as well as the potential risks posed by prohibiting law-abiding citizens from their constitutional right to self-defense.”
“Impeach and remove Lujan Grisham,” New Mexico Republican state Rep. John Block said.
Grisham justified her administration’s decree by pointing to a spate of recent shooting deaths, saying that “the time for standard measures has passed,” according to a Friday press release.
“If I were blatantly violating someone’s constitutional rights by shoving them while they were trying to speak, blocking the register as they tried to buy contraceptives, or grabbing at their gun while they were legally carrying, I’d be arrested. Why is it OK when a Governor does it?” Kostas Moros, an attorney for Michel & Associates, said of the decree.
The National Rifle Association also ripped Grisham for the decision, stating that her “unconstitutional assertion of canceling the 1st and 2nd Amendments in an ’emergency’ echoes tactics seen in tyrannical regimes, not in a free America.”
Neither Grisham’s office nor the NMDOH responded immediately to requests for comment.
Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact email@example.com