New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) signed an emergency order on Friday that will bar firearms from being carried in public in Albuquerque.
Grisham said she was compelled to act due to a series of shootings in the city, including one that killed an 11-year-old boy outside a baseball game this week and a group of targeted shootings against Muslim men last month.
The motion, using an emergency health order, bans concealed and open carry firearms in all public places in areas with a specific violent crime threshold — one that only been met by the city of Albuquerque. Police and security are exempt from the ban.
“I welcome the debate and fight about how to make New Mexicans safer,” Lujan Grisham said at a news conference Friday.
“As I said yesterday, the time for standard measures has passed,” she said in a statement. “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.”
Local law enforcement have already questioned the order, with the Albuquerque police chief vowing not to enforce it and Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen questioned the order’s constitutionality.
“While I understand and appreciate the urgency, the temporary ban challenges the foundation of our constitution, which I swore an oath to uphold,” Allen said in a statement. “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.”
The order also increases funding for state police in Albuquerque.
Republicans have stepped up to denounce the move, including top presidential candidates.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) posted on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, the order is “asserting the power to infringe on Second Amendment rights by executive fiat.”
Entrepreneur and 2024 GOP hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy also attacked Grisham, claiming she should focus her anti-crime efforts on border protection.
“Friendly suggestion to Lujan Grisham on how to *actually* reduce violent crime in your state: focus on sealing your own state’s southern border & stop the virtue signaling elsewhere,” Ramaswamy said in a post on X.
Grisham also signed a second executive order declaring illegal drugs a public health emergency.