Bill Signing Is Latest Example of NRA Defeat in the Land of Enchantment; Last Year, New Mexico Enacted Legislation Requiring Background Checks on All Gun Sales
SANTA FE, N.M. — The New Mexico chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today applauded Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham for signing into law SB 5, legislation to allow law enforcement officers to petition a court for temporary removal of a firearm when there is evidence someone poses an extreme risk to self or others. The signing makes New Mexico the 18th state with an extreme risk law and comes less than a year after Gov. Lujan Grisham signed legislation requiring background checks on all gun sales.
“For too long, New Mexico lawmakers failed to act on gun safety,” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action. “New Mexicans elected a legislature willing to do the right thing, and for two years straight, lawmakers have responded with action. Like last year’s background checks law, the extreme risk bill signed into law today will save many lives.”
“For the second year in a row, our leaders have passed landmark legislation to protect the public,” said Anamaria Dahl, a volunteer leader with the New Mexico chapter of Moms Demand Action. “Across the state and across party lines, New Mexicans want our state to be a leader on gun safety, and lawmakers are continuing to respond with action. We’re grateful to Gov. Lujan Grisham and all the gun sense champions in the legislature for listening to New Mexicans and fighting to keep our families and communities safe.”
The bill’s signing is the latest example of progress in New Mexico and the latest defeat in the state for the NRA. After signing legislation in 2019 to require background checks on all gun sales, Gov. Lujan Grisham announced in January that she would include gun safety legislation in her 2020 legislative agenda. During the 2018 midterm elections, the New Mexico Moms Demand Action volunteers declared victory after electing gun sense champion Gov. Lujan Grisham, defeating her NRA-endorsed opponent. Lujan Grisham’s platform during her campaign included support for common-sense gun safety measures in the Land of Enchantment.
Earlier this month, with lawmakers working to pass the bill through both chambers of the legislature, dozens of New Mexico Moms Demand Action volunteers gathered for an annual advocacy day, holding more than 50 meetings at the Roundhouse urging for action on extreme risk legislation in New Mexico.
As a result of today’s signing, 18 states and the District of Columbia have now passed extreme risk legislation. Thirteen of these bills have been passed since the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida in 2018. Virginia’s House and Senate will hold final votes on extreme risk legislation as soon as this week.
Under an extreme risk law, law enforcement would be able to petition a court for an extreme risk protection order to temporarily remove guns from a person in crisis. Every year, nearly 250 people die by gun suicide in New Mexico, with an average of 35 hours between gun suicide deaths. In a moment of crisis, access to a gun can be the difference between life and death. About 90 percent of suicide attempts using a gun end in death, compared to four percent of suicide attempts that do not involve a firearm.
Statistics about gun violence in New Mexico are available here, and information on how New Mexico’s gun laws compared to other states overall is available here.