Democratic New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham sparked a bipartisan controversy, leading to calls for her impeachment, when she temporarily suspended Second Amendment rights in one county following the tragic shooting of an 11-year-old boy near a minor league baseball stadium this week. Governor Lujan Grisham invoked her emergency powers to enact this temporary suspension, which applies to Albuquerque and Bernalillo County for a minimum of 30 days, as reported by Fox News.
“When New Mexicans are afraid to be in crowds, to take their kids to school, to leave a baseball game — when their very right to exist is threatened by the prospect of violence at every turn — something is very wrong,” the governor said.
“The suspension was classified as an emergency public health order, and applies to open and concealed carry in most public places, excluding police and licensed security guards. The restriction is connected to a threshold for violent crime rates met only by the Albuquerque area,” Fox News said.
She said the order is “going to pose incredible challenges for me as a governor and as a state.”
“I welcome the debate and fight about how to make New Mexicans safer,” she said.
The day after, Republican state Representatives Stefani Lord and John Block made an announcement, stating their intention to initiate impeachment proceedings against the governor.
“I am calling on counsel to begin the impeachment process against Governor Grisham,” Rep. Lord said. “This is an abhorrent attempt at imposing a radical, progressive agenda on an unwilling populous. Rather than addressing crime at its core, Governor Grisham is restricting the rights of law-abiding gun owners. Even Grisham believes this emergency order won’t prohibit criminals from carrying or using weapons; a basic admission that this will only put New Mexicans in danger as they won’t be able to defend themselves from violent crime.”
“She put this emergency order together and it violates her oath. And she’s supposed to be protecting and defending the rights of New Mexico, she can’t just raise her hand one day and say, I promise to uphold this oath and promised to protect the people of New Mexico and the Constitution, and then just one day decide, oh, just kidding,” she said before saying, there “is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution.”
The governor’s order even drew criticism from Democrats and gun legislation activists.
“I support gun safety laws. However, this order from the Governor of New Mexico violates the U.S. Constitution. 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,” California Democrat Rep. Ted Lieu said on X, formerly known as Twitter.
I support gun safety laws. However, this order from the Governor of New Mexico violates the U.S. Constitution. 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. https://t.co/kOhLMtaOl2
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) September 9, 2023
“I support gun safety but there is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution,” gun safety activist David Hogg said.
“While I understand and appreciate the urgency, the temporary ban challenges the foundation of our constitution, which I swore an oath to uphold,” Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen said. “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.”
Even Twitter/X CEO Elon Musk spoke up over the controversy and called for the governor to be removed from office.
“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?” he said.