Supervisors in the Washington, D.C. exurb of Loudoun County, Virginia voted overwhelmingly this week to investigate how to implement and enforce more than a half-dozen gun control bills signed into law by Gov. Ralph Northam earlier this year. The laws take effect on July 1st, and supervisors on the Democrat-dominated board signaled that they want to be ready to enforce the new laws once they’re officially on the books.
Moms Demand Action, which calls itself a “grassroots movement of Americans fighting for public safety measures that can protect people from gun violence,” has been active locally in seeking more gun control measures.
Ami Miller, a spokeswoman for Loudoun Moms Demand Action, said she’s pleased with [Supervisor Juli] Briskman’s efforts.
“We’re glad to see the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors take the crisis of gun violence seriously,” Miller said. “After seeing the governor sign several gun safety policies, it’s encouraging to see our local officials keep up the momentum and implement these new laws to keep our community safe.”
Back in December, the Loudoun County board rejected a Second Amendment Sanctuary resolution, though at least one town in the county passed a weaker resolution calling on state lawmakers to reject gun control legislation back in February. Lovettsville city council members overwhelmingly approved the resolution with dozens of supporters in attendance, though many of them were hoping to see a stronger statement by the city council.
Mayor Nate Fontaine emphasized that Lovettsville’s proclamation does not make the town a sanctuary town, but that it simply is a statement for the General Assembly. Per McIntyre’s request, letters from more than 30 residents were attached to the proclamation, which was sent toSen. John Bell (D-13) and Del. Dave. LaRock (R-33). Fountain said the town had received about19 letters opposing the proclamation and about 10 that are in favor of it, with more than came in just before the meeting he had yet to count.
The proclamation is based on the belief that some bills would “criminalize the lawful exercise of the right to keep and bear arms” and that many citizens are “gravely concerned about the proposed infringements upon their constitutional rights.”
“The Town Council supports measures that would advance firearm safety without infringing upon the right to keep and bear arms [and]wishes to express its strong commitment to all rights of citizens of the Town of Lovettsville, Loudoun County, Commonwealth of Virginia to legally keep and bear arms [and] strongly opposes the passage of any law that would unconstitutionally restrict any right of our citizens,” it reads.
“We must stand with our core beliefs that our rights should not be infringed upon,” Steadman said.
As we get closer to the July 1st effective date for Northam’s gun control laws, I expect we’ll see more blue counties follow the lead of Loudoun County supervisors and discuss how the new laws will be implemented. In the 95 counties across Virginia that have adopted Second Amendment Sanctuary resolutions, on the other hand, the discussions among county supervisors and residents will likely focus on legal challenges to the new laws, and I suspect that we’ll be hearing from several sheriffs that they plan on using their discretion to not enforce any laws that they believe violate the Second Amendment rights of their constituents. The fight over Ralph Northam’s gun control agenda has quieted down over the past few months, but it’s going to get loud again as we head into summer.