Sheriff Defies Governor’s ‘Unconstitutional’ Ban on Carrying Guns

A sheriff said Monday that he won’t enforce New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s emergency order suspending open and concealed gun carry for 30 days in Bernalillo County and Albuquerque.

Grisham, a Democrat, issued the order Friday through the New Mexico Department of Health after several shootings this year in the state, including one in which an 11-year-old boy was killed Sept. 6.


Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen argued at a press conference that the governor’s order violates the Second Amendment and would be dangerous to enforce because of potential “political violence.”

“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 such as U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., and David Hogg, a survivor of the high school shooting in Parkland, Fla., and a vocal gun control activist.

Republican lawmakers in New Mexico have proposed impeachment proceedings against Grisham, 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 Friday, when he raised seven issues that he believed Grisham had overlooked, according to a press release.

Enforcing the governor’s order potentially would exacerbate the already high crime rate in Bernalillo County and only punish law-abiding citizens, the sheriff argued in the press conference Monday.

“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.”

Citywide 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. Grisham’s office did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

This report originally was published by the Daily Caller News Foundation

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