Sandoval County joins growing list of Second Amendment sanctuary counties

Sandoval County is joining others across the state as a “Second Amendment Sanctuary County.” This comes in response to the several proposed gun laws making their way through the Roundhouse. 

The resolution passed four to one, but some say it doesn’t hold much weight and is only symbolic, showing they don’t agree with some of the new proposed gun control laws. Others say if those new laws get passed, they’re unconstitutional and unenforceable. 

Sandoval County is the 12th county in New Mexico to pass a resolution declaring itself a “Second Amendment Sanctuary County,” but not everyone who attended Thursday night’s commission meeting agreed with the decision. 

“I’m opposed to this ordinance because as someone else said it’s ‘political theater,'” one person said. 

“With all due respect, I can’t imagine that any of you commissioners, thought the county sheriff or any county in the state should be given the authority to pick and choose what laws he wants to enforce or the ones he doesn’t,” another person said. 

The resolution is in response to several gun-control bills making their way through the Roundhouse. 

“This is part of our constitution, the right to bear arms and we need to support this,” supporter Teri Surette-Fowinkle said. 

Sandoval County Chairman David Heil says this resolution sends a strong message. 

“The wording could kind of leave it open to the possibility that someone is being criminal when they’re loaning their gun to someone else,” Heil said. 

He says counties that have passed a similar resolution want lawmakers to rethink some of these proposed laws. 

“The citizens of our state, especially in these counties, are interested in them taking another look at the legislation,” he said. 

The sheriff also spoke Thursday night in front of the packed house urging commissioners to pass the resolution. 

“I, as sheriff, will still enforce all existing laws to the fullest. This resolution just helps protect law-abiding citizens,” Sheriff Jesse Casaus said. 

There are about 12 bills currently at the Roundhouse that deal with gun legislation. The New Mexico Sheriff’s Association says it has issues with about six of those. 

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