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Firearm Sanctuary Counties Sued by State
Harney and Yamhill Counties have passed firearm sanctuary ordinances

Mere days after SB 554 went into effect, Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum (D-Portland) has filed lawsuits against Yamhill County and Harney County, asking Circuit Court judges in those counties to order that state gun safety laws remain fully in force -- and fully enforceable. According the the Oregon Department of Justice -- headed by Rosenblum -- the lawsuits are in response to the adoption of sanctuary ordinances in these counties that seek to nullify new statewide gun safety laws. The ordinances also provide that responsible officials who enforce the state’s duly-enacted laws can be prosecuted or subjected to private lawsuits.

“Gun safety laws exist to help keep guns out of dangerous hands and keep people safe. A county commission simply doesn’t get to override state law in this way,” said Attorney General Rosenblum. “The laws of Oregon remain fully in force -- and fully enforceable -- notwithstanding these invalid ordinances. No officials should be frightened out of properly doing their job by the threat of illegitimate criminal charges or bogus lawsuits. Although today’s lawsuits are addressed to only these two Oregon counties, other counties have enacted similar illegal ordinances. These actions will hopefully send the message that we are prepared to preserve the rule of law across our state.”

Kevin Starrett, Director of Oregon Firearms Federation said, "This will be an interesting battle given Oregon’s forceful efforts to thwart immigration law and its legalization of hard drugs. Once again, the state will be using your tax dollars to attack the rights of Oregonians while they work overtime to protect criminals."

According to the lawsuit, a local county ordinance is

...expressly preempted in its entirety by ORS 166.170, which bars local firearm ordinances and provides that a county lacks authority to regulate in the area of firearms absent express authorization. State law expressly preempts local civil law where the “text, context, and legislative history of the statute ‘unambiguously expresses an intention to preclude local governments from regulating’ in the same area as that governed by the statute.”

Ellen Rosenblum is rumored to be considering a run for Oregon Governor.


--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2021-10-07 09:18:43Last Update: 2021-10-07 12:26:51



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