Sep 13 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senators Thom Tillis, Lindsey Graham (R-SC), John Cornyn (R-TX), John Kennedy (R-LA), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), and Tom Cotton (R-AR) sent a letter today to Attorney General Merrick Garland demanding he protect the constitutional rights of the citizens of New Mexico from the unconstitutional actions of Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham.

On September 8, 2023, Governor Grisham issued Executive Order 2023-130, Declaring State of Public Health Emergency Due to Gun Violence. The New Mexico Department of Health subsequently issued an unconstitutional public health order which declares gun violence a public health emergency under New Mexico statute, and prohibits the open or concealed carry of firearms in Albuquerque and Bernalillo County.

“Governor Grisham has issued an order which is being used to blatantly trample on the Second Amendment rights of the citizens of New Mexico, and the Department of Justice (DOJ) must act swiftly to stop this unconstitutional power grab,” wrote the senators.

“While the public health order may invoke state law to authorize this unconstitutional infringement, it should be no match for the authority which the DOJ has to enforce our rights under the U.S. Constitution. That is why we are calling on you to enforce the Constitution and intervene on behalf of the constitutional rights of New Mexicans to stop this unconstitutional act from standing,” the senators continued. 

“By preventing certain New Mexicans from exercising their constitutional rights to carry a handgun for self-defense outside the home, Governor Grisham is violating the Second Amendment, the Fourteenth Amendment, and Article IV of the Constitution. This is a chilling action, and it is imperative that your Department act immediately to show that this kind of unconstitutional abuse will not be tolerated in New Mexico or anywhere else in the United States,” the senators concluded. 

Read the full letter here.