Bernalillo County DA Responds To NM Emergency Ban
New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) has caused a stir with her ban on carrying handguns in cities such as Albuquerque, leading to criticism from gun control activist David Hogg and entrepreneur Elon Musk.
The ban, issued on Friday, September 8, and effective immediately, prevents citizens from carrying handguns in the open or concealing them. It also bars concealed carry permit holders from carrying their firearms for self-defense.
Hogg responded to the order with a post on an unidentified social media platform, declaring his support for gun safety but denouncing the governor's policy as unconstitutional. "I support gun safety but there is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution," the activist wrote.
I support gun safety but there is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution. https://t.co/6GfbOZLc7g
— David Hogg 🟧 (@davidhogg111) September 9, 2023
Musk also expressed his opinion of the ban on social media, saying: "At risk of stating what should be obvious, deliberately violating the Constitution is next-level illegal. How soon can this person be removed from office?"
The National Association for Gun Rights reacted swiftly to the ban, filing a lawsuit against the governor before the weekend was out. Sam Bregman, a district attorney from Bernalillo County, has also refused to enforce the ban, citing its unconstitutionality.
"As an officer of the court, I cannot and will not enforce something that is clearly unconstitutional," said Bregman. "This office will continue to focus on criminals of any age that use guns in the commission of a crime."
The state of New Mexico has been a frequent topic of conversation when it comes to gun rights. In 2019, Governor Grisham signed a red flag gun bill into law, allowing for the seizure of firearms from individuals considered to be a danger to themselves or others. The state also has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation, including limits on large-capacity magazines and mandatory background checks.
Grisham's ban on carrying handguns has been met with both praise and condemnation, and it remains to be seen how far the courts will go in backing or striking down the policy. Whatever the outcome, it appears the Governor is betting that the court system will back her order, or she wouldn't have implemented it in the first place.
Time will tell whether or not New Mexico's gun laws will pass constitutional muster in the coming weeks, but for now, the state remains a hot topic of discussion within the gun rights community.