With counties across the state of Virginia passing Second Amendment sanctuary resolutions in anticipation of strict gun control, Democrats are threatening to send in the national guard if Virginia Sheriffs refuse to enforce gun control laws.
— Mark Krikorian (@MarkSKrikorian) December 12, 2019
WashingtonExaminer reports Democratic lawmakers on Capitol Hill say local police who do not enforce gun control measures likely to pass in Virginia should face prosecution and even threats of the National Guard.
After November’s Virginia Legislature elections that led to Democrats taking control of both chambers, the gun control legislation proposed by some Democrats moved forward, including universal background checks, an “assault weapons” ban, and a red flag law.
Legal firearm owners in the state, however, joined with their sheriffs to form Second Amendment sanctuary counties, which declare the authorities in these municipalities uphold the Second Amendment in the face of any gun control measure passed by Richmond.
Over 75 counties in Virginia have so far adopted such Second Amendment sanctuary resolutions in the commonwealth, the latest being Spotsylvania County. The board of supervisors voted unanimously to approve a resolution declaring that county police will not enforce state-level gun laws that violate Second Amendment rights.
Virginia Democratic officials, however, already say local law enforcement supporting these resolutions will face consequences if they do not carry out any law the state Legislature passes.
“I would hope they either resign in good conscience, because they cannot uphold the law which they are sworn to uphold, or they’re prosecuted for failure to fulfill their oath,” Democratic Virginia Rep. Gerry Connolly told the Washington Examiner of local county police who may refuse to enforce future gun control measures. “The law is the law. If that becomes the law, you don’t have a choice, not if you’re a sworn officer of the law.”
Democratic Virginia Rep. Donald McEachin suggested cutting off state funds to counties that do not comply with any gun control measures that pass in Richmond.
“They certainly risk funding, because if the sheriff’s department is not going to enforce the law, they’re going to lose money. The counties’ attorneys offices are not going to have the money to prosecute because their prosecutions are going to go down,” he said.
McEachin also noted that Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam could call the National Guard, if necessary.
“And ultimately, I’m not the governor, but the governor may have to nationalize the National Guard to enforce the law,” he said. “That’s his call, because I don’t know how serious these counties are and how severe the violations of law will be. But that’s obviously an option he has.”
UPDATE: The Virginia National Guard has responded to Gov. Ralph Northam’s comments on Second Amendment sanctuaries
Per WSLS, below is the full response from Maj. Gen. Timothy P Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia:
“We have received multiple questions regarding proposed legislation for the 2020 General Assembly session and the authority of the Governor of Virginia to employ the Virginia National Guard in a law enforcement role. Please make sure you share this message with your all of your personnel.
We understand and respect the passion people feel for the U.S. Constitution and 2nd Amendment rights. We will not speculate about the possible use of the Virginia National Guard. I encourage everyone to be patient while we allow our elected officials to work through the legislative process.
We have not received any requests from the Governor, or anyone on his staff, about serving in a law enforcement role related to any proposed legislation.
I expect our Soldiers, Airmen and members of the Virginia Defense Force to be professional and respectful in their discussions about this subject. As private citizens, our personnel are free to express their opinions to their elected officials, but they should not engage in any political activity while in a uniformed status.
We will provide regular updates when appropriate during the General Assembly session. Please utilize your chain of command to direct any questions or concerns to my office, and we will do our best to address them.”