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New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images

(LifeSiteNews) – Democrat New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham set off a firestorm Friday in claiming the power to unilaterally suspend gun rights in and around Albuquerque under the guise of “public health.”

Declaring gun violence a “public health emergency” after the shooting deaths of multiple children from July to September, Grisham issued a public health order suspending “open and concealed carry laws in Bernalillo County, temporarily prohibiting the carrying of guns on public property with certain exceptions” (such as police and security guards) and requiring lawful gun owners to “transport the firearm in a locked box, use a trigger lock, or some other mechanism that renders the gun incapable of being fired.” It is slated to last for 30 days.

The order also calls for monthly inspection of licensed firearm dealers, prohibiting firearms on state property and other public places where children gather, and comprehensive reporting on gunshot victims who show up at hospitals.

“There are gonna be a lot of questions about whether or not we think we have the legal rights to do that,” Grisham said at a press conference. “I am sure … there will be a legal challenge, and I can’t tell you that we [will] win it,” but “I think it’s time to talk about the absoluteness of the discussion and the current court actions that suggest that the Second Amendment is an absolute right.”

“No constitutional right, in my view, including my oath, is intended to be absolute,” she added.

The negative reception to the move was swift and fierce, with state Republicans filing a lawsuit to block the order from taking effect, as well as calling for Grisham to be impeached. “She took an oath to uphold that constitution,” Republican state Rep. Stefani Lord said. “She needs to understand that those rights are absolute. And that’s why we are impeaching her, because she has committed a crime in what she is doing.”

Perhaps recognizing the political dangers involved, even some Democrats have said it goes too far, including Democratic U.S. Sen. Sen. Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Democratic U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu of California, Bernalillo County Sheriff John Allen, and gun control activist David Hogg, who admitted that “there is no such thing as a state public health emergency exception to the U.S. Constitution.”

“The argument that gun control affects only law-abiding citizens has been at the core of debate for over 100 years,” Crime Prevention Research Center executive director for education Kerry Slone wrote Tuesday at the Washington Times. “Grisham‘s recent action inadvertently proved it true. When asked, ‘Do you really think that criminals are going to hear this message and not carry a gun in Albuquerque, on the streets, for 30 days?’ the governor quickly replied, ‘Uh, no, but here’s what I do think: It’s a pretty resounding message!’”

Grisham is one of the most far-left governors in America. During her tenure, she has signed legislation affirming “rights” to abortion and underage gender “transition” surgeries and legalizing assisted suicide, and attempted to legalize infanticide, force doctors to commit abortions, and ban Thanksgiving gatherings in the name of COVID-19.