A public health order that suspended the right to carry gun in public in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the state’s largest metro region, has been partially stopped by a federal judge. This comes at a time when criticism is mounting over the steps taken by the governor, and political gaps are growing wider.
The decision that was handed down on Wednesday by United States District Judge David Urias is a setback for Democratic Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham as she responds to multiple recent shootings that resulted in the deaths of children. One of these killings took the life of an 11-year-old boy as he was leaving a minor league baseball game in Albuquerque.
On Friday, Governor Lujan Grisham issued an emergency public health order that temporarily restricted the right to openly or covertly carry firearms in public places. The decision was made based on a statistical threshold for violent crime that is unique to Albuquerque and its surrounding areas. The recent shootings were used as evidence by the governor when he stated that action was required. She admitted that there will be some people who disobeyed the instructions.
Civil fines and a fine of up to $5,000 might have been levied on those who violated the law by the state police. Both the sheriff of the surrounding area and the chief of police in Albuquerque had refused to enforce the order.
In the United States District Court in Albuquerque, a torrent of legal challenges to the order was filed, with the advocates for gun rights saying that the injunction violated their civil rights as outlined in the Second Amendment. Impeachment procedures against the governor have been requested by the majority party in the legislature, who are Republicans.
In spite of the demonstrations that have brought large audiences to public spaces in Albuquerque over the past few days, Lujan Grisham has maintained her stubborn stance. After making use of public health directives for more aggressive lockdowns during the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, the governor is currently putting the limits of her executive authority to the test once more.
Mothers and veterans of the armed forces have been among those participating in the demonstrations, and several of them have been seen walking around with handguns holstered on their hips and rifles draped over their shoulders. They are concerned about their ability to protect themselves from violent crime in a city that has been scarred by drive-by shootings and tragic road rage episodes. They have stated their concerns about the ability to protect themselves from violent crime.
Even some of the most prominent Democrats in the state, such as Raul Torrez, the state attorney general, have stated that the time spent by the governor on the matter would have been better spent creating complete legislation.
Because New Mexico is an open-carry state, the order of the governor to suspend open and concealed carry of weapons affects everyone in Bernalillo county who is legally allowed to own a gun, with a few notable exceptions. However, there are some people who are exempt from the order. According to review by media of data released by the New Mexico department of public safety for the 2023 fiscal year, just more than 14,500 people in the county have an active concealed-carry license. This information was provided for the county.