New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham is taking heat from both parties in her state after issuing an order to suspend gun rights.
The order affects the crime-plagued city of Albuquerque and its surrounding county if Bernalillo.
It declares a 30-day ban on the right to carry both open and concealed firearms in public and directs state police to enforce the order, which includes fines.
Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen, also a Democrat, said he would not enforce the “unconstitutional” ban.
“This order will not do anything to curb gun violence other than punish law-abiding citizens from their constitutional right to self-defense,” Allen said at a press conference.
“It’s unconstitutional. So there’s no way we could enforce that order.”
Grisham responded to the sheriff’s comments when asked for comments by reporters.
“I don’t need a lecture on constitutionality from Sheriff Allen: what I need is action,” she said.
“We’ve passed common-sense gun legislation, including red flag laws, domestic violence protections, a ban on straw purchases, and safe storage laws; dedicated hundreds of millions of dollars to a fund specifically to help law enforcement hire and retain officers; increased penalties for violent offenders and provided massive support to intervention programs,” she added.
“We’ve given you the tools, Sheriff Allen — now stop being squeamish about using them. I will not back down from doing what’s right and I will always put the safety of the people of New Mexico first.”
Other Democrats Push Back
Along with the sheriff, Democrat lawmakers and even gun control advocates criticized Grisham’s order.
Democratic state Senator Joe Cervantes pleaded with Grisham to rescind the order, saying in a statement that an “unconstitutional approach undermines the important collaboration gun issues deserve, and the important role of a Governor to lead genuine reforms.”
Representative Ted Lieu, a Democrat from California and a member of the Congressional Task Force on Gun Violence Prevention, posted a rebuttal to X.
“No state in the union can suspend the federal Constitution. There is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution,” Lieu wrote.
Even notorious gun control advocate David Hogg posted against the order, parroting Lieu’s wording.
“I support gun safety but there is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution.”