New Mexico House Approves Watered-Down Carry Ban at Polling Sites

AP Photo/Alex Sanz

With just two days left in the 30-day budget session (a session, by the way, that has spent almost no time at all debating an actual budget), New Mexico Democrats are still working on a number of new gun control measures, though the two bills that have cleared both chambers have seen some significant revisions in the process. 

As we talked about with Zach Fort of the New Mexico Shooting Sports Association on Monday, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s proposed 14-business-day waiting period bill has shrunk down to seven days, with an exception for concealed carry holders tacked on as an enticement for some Democratic lawmakers who were on the fence. Even with that change and several other amendments, the bill narrowly passed the House on a 36-32 vote earlier this week. 

On Wednesday, the House also made a notable change to SB 5, which would ban the carrying of firearms at or near polling places. 

According to Grisham, concealed carry holders are so dangerous that they should be banned from carrying everywhere in Albuquerque and Bernalillo County, but the state legislature keeps exempting those licensees from the gun control bills they’re sending her way. Not that it makes these bills acceptable, by any means, but it’s still amusing to see Grisham’s fellow Democrats rebuke her attack on concealed carry holders by excluding them from some of the gun control bills she’s demanding. 

There are still multiple gun control bills that are awaiting action, including the semi-auto ban known as HB 137, which could come up for a vote on the House floor any time. But with the regular session set to expire at noon on Thursday, time is running out for the anti-gunners to move that bill from the House to the Senate, where it would have to go through committee and a floor vote before it could be sent to Grisham’s desk for her signature. 

The same goes for HB 114, which would encourage lawsuits against gun makers and sellers based on “public nuisance” statutes, and HB 127, which would raise the age to purchase a long gun in the state from 18 to 21. It’s still premature to declare any of those bills dead for the session, however. The next 24 hours will be a frenetic rush to get as many bills passed as possible, and now that lawmakers have sent a budget to Grisham they’ll have more time to spend on the governor’s gun control agenda. Still, every hour that goes by without these bills being brought to the House floor for a vote makes it more difficult for Grisham’s legislative lackeys in Santa Fe to deliver her anti-Second Amendment wish list, and gun owners in the state should keep up their pressure on lawmakers until the session has been formally gaveled to a close tomorrow. 


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