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Sheriff Defies Blue State Governor’s ‘Unconstitutional’ Gun Carry Ban

A sheriff said in a press conference Monday he will not enforce Democratic New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s emergency order to suspend open and concealed gun carry for 30 days in Bernalillo County and Albuquerque.

Grisham issued the order Friday through the New Mexico Department of Health after several shootings occurred in the state this year, including one that killed an 11-year-old boy on Sept. 6. John Allen, the sheriff for the county, argued that the order violates the second amendment and would be dangerous to enforce because of potential “political violence,” according to the press conference.

“It’s unconstitutional, so there’s no way we can enforce that order,” Allen said. “This ban does nothing to curb gun violence.”

Grisham’s emergency order has drawn bipartisan criticism from  across the nation over the past few days, including from prominent liberal politicians like Democratic Rep. Ted Lieu of California, and David Hogg, a survivor of the Parkland shooting and a vocal gun control activist. Republican lawmakers in the state have proposed impeachment proceedings, and the National Association for Gun Rights sued the governor within 24 hours of the order taking effect, The Associated Press reported.

Allen initially expressed concern over the emergency order on Friday, when he raised seven issues that he believed Grisham had overlooked, according to a press release. Enforcing the governor’s would potentially exacerbate the already high crime-rate in the county and would only punish law-abiding citizens, Allen further argued in the press conference.

“Let me be clear: I hold my standards high, and I do not, and never will, hedge on what is right,” Allen said. “My oath is to protect the constitution, and that is what I will do.”

City-wide narcotics and drug offenses in Albuquerque, the main city in Bernalillo County, were up by 145% this year compared to 2022, according to police data. The city has seen a 36% increase in weapons violations over the past year as well.

The Bernalillo Sheriff’s Office declined to comment further on the matter. The New Mexico Governor’s Office did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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