Ducey Signs Arizona Second Amendment Sanctuary Bill

(AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

While about a dozen states are considering bills that would restrict or forbid local and state law enforcement from cooperating with federal officials in enforcing any new gun control laws handed down in D.C., Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey is the first executive to actually sign one of the bills this year.

On Tuesday afternoon the Arizona governor approved HB 2111, adding another layer of protection for gun owners in the state and sending a signal to Democrats on Capitol Hill that their anti-gun agenda will be met with resistance in many parts of the country.

Ducey’s signing of the bill came just hours after gun control advocates delivered petitions signed by about 2,500 people opposed to the measure, which is a pretty paltry figure, even for a state that’s as Second Amendment friendly as Arizona.

“I’m always hopeful,” Moms Demand Action volunteer Marie Thearle said about Ducey possibly vetoing the bill. “You can’t always do this work without hope.” 

Thearle, along with a handful of other volunteers waited outside the executive tower while the petitions were delivered Monday morning and said she is concerned that the bill will cause confusion for local law enforcement if passed. 

Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone told KTAR that the bill was confusing and would put law enforcement in an awkward position. 

“I think … there’s political motivation. It’s one of those emotional issues, but as far as the impact on law enforcement, it will create confusion or challenges more than benefits or protecting the Second Amendment,” Penzone told the radio station. “The people who wrote it really didn’t sit down and have a thoughtful conversation as to the application.”

Carrillo, a survivor of domestic violence and gun violence herself, said she worries about how the legislation could affect federal legislation aimed at preventing loopholes abusers use to keep their weapons. 

In Arizona, between 2008 and 2012 approximately 60% of all domestic violence incidents were committed with a firearm. 

Despite delivering the signatures, Carillo said she doesn’t expect Ducey will veto the measure — and they are already trying to think of next steps. One of those options is pushing for legislation and pushing for more gun control and candidates who support strengthening Arizona’s gun laws. 

“We need people like these volunteers in the legislature,” Carillo said, motioning to the other Moms Demand Action volunteers. “2022 is right around the corner.” 

If anybody, including the Maricopa County sheriff, is confused by the langauge in HB 2111, let me clear up any confusion. The bill forbids any state or local law enforcement agency from using any “personnel or financial resources” to enforce any federal gun control law that’s “inconsistent” with any of the state’s regulations of firearms. In other words, if the federal government were to impose a gun or magazine ban, it would be left to the feds to try to enforce that ban, because entities like the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office would be forbidden from spending a dime to help or assist in any way with enforcing such a ban against Arizona residents.

Sheriff Penzone’s right that the bill is political, but then again, so is the push for gun control in Washington, D.C. Some Democrats are now arguing that they should water down the background check bills that have passed the House just so they can say they passed something, even if they don’t think their legislation will prevent violent crimes. The push for gun control is more about politics than public safety, and it always has been. I’m glad that Gov. Ducey has signed the Second Amendment Sanctuary Bill, and I hope that his signature will spur on lawmakers in other states to get moving on the 2A Sanctuary legislation in their own statehouses.

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