An anti-gun group has made its next move in the developing saga surrounding the phenomenon of Second Amendment “sanctuary” jurisdictions around the country.
The Washington, D.C.-based Brady Campaign, a national gun control organization, sent out public information requests earlier this week to New Mexico sheriffs who say they won’t enforce the state’s new gun control laws.
The requests are being made under the state’s Inspection of Public Records Act and are aimed at suspected communications between county sheriffs and the NRA and other gun rights groups.
Last month I reported that several counties in the Land of Enchantment had declared themselves Second Amendment sanctuaries in response to new gun control efforts in the state capital of Santa Fe. They’ve since been joined by other jurisdictions in the states of Washington and Nevada for similar reasons.
“Our law enforcement officers are our nation’s front line defenders of the law,” reads a statement from Brady Campaign President Kris Brown. “If they are refusing to enforce the law, they are refusing to stand in defense of public safety, and the American people deserve answers about what led them to that decision.”
The strategy seems pretty clear here: The easiest way to take wind out of these sheriffs’ sails (as well as the movement behind them) would be some old-fashioned guilt by association with the gun control movement’s all-purpose bogeyman, the National Rifle Association.
However, at least one county sheriff says he didn’t get the idea from any pro-gun groups. “I only heard from the [New Mexico] Sheriffs’ Association,” Rio Arriba County Sheriff James Lujan told the Santa Fe New Mexican. “The sheriffs, we all talked to each other about it, but that’s about all.”
Under New Mexico’s transparency law, sheriff’s offices have 15 business days to respond to the requests.