POLITICS | New Mexico governor targets open carry and gets caught in the crossfire
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New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has mired herself in a Second Amendment battle with few on her side. On Friday, Sept. 8, the Democratic governor issued a 30-day public health emergency that suspends open and concealed carry laws in Bernalillo County, home to the state’s largest city. The ban also applies to any guns carried by civilians on state property. Within 24 hours, Lujan Grisham was ducking a volley of opposition.
The National Association for Gun Rights filed a lawsuit calling the order unconstitutional. About 100 protesters flocked to Albuquerque on Sept. 10, openly carrying their weapons. The rally remained peaceful, but gun owners demanded Lujan Grisham rescind her order. Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen insisted the ban would not curb gun violence and said his jurisdiction would not enforce it. Lujan Grisham shot back, saying state police would. But none did.
On Sept. 13, a federal judge put the order on hold until a hearing on its constitutionality is held in October.
Even gun control advocates gave the order mixed reviews. An ACLU litigation manager said the governor should focus more on addressing the root causes of gun violence. Other Democrats have said the legislature should pursue a constitutional amendment.
According to 2021 studies, New Mexico is among the top five states with the highest rate of gun homicides, with most happening in Albuquerque. Lujan Grisham said the order is a response to a series of fatal shootings over the summer involving children.
Pelosi has no plans to retire
Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced she will seek reelection for her California seat in 2024, rejecting calls to retire. Pelosi, 83, is known for raking in sizable contributions to the Democratic National Party, funds she says will be even more important next year. She told reporters her continued service will strengthen the party’s chances at taking back the House in the next cycle.
Although Pelosi’s San Francisco district is a Democratic stronghold, many voters are concerned about the age of political representatives, including President Joe Biden. Pelosi was first elected to Congress in 1987. She was the first woman ever to serve as House Speaker, and has held the position twice. She gave up her role in Democratic leadership to New York Rep. Hakeem Jeffries in January.
If Pelosi wins reelection, it will be her 20th term in the U.S. House of Representatives. —C.L.
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