January 8, 2024

Anti-Gun Legislation to be Introduced in New Mexico

hunting, shooting, hunter-5834311.jpg
Article Contact: Barry Snell,

Why It Matters:  Legislation seeking to restrict is the lawful ownership and use of firearms is often eventually used as a vector of attack for issues more directly related to hunting,  just as restrictions on hunting are often used as a vector of attack against firearms. Our issues are fundamentally intertwined, given that firearms of every kind are routinely used in hunting and many sportsmen and women are also avid recreational shooters. Therefore, it is important to be aware of these issues as they arise so you can have a full understanding of what may likely happen in the future and how it impacts our sporting community.


In the wake of New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s failed attempt at banning the carrying of firearms via executive order back in October 2023, she and other New Mexico lawmakers pledged to make guns a focal point of the 2024 legislative session. Those executive orders ignited a political firestorm that resulted in immediate lawsuits and push-back and led to her rolling those executive orders back within days of issuing them, turning her strategy towards a legislative agenda instead.

Although this year’s session of the New Mexico Legislature is supposed to be a budget-only session, the Governor still has the power to call up any issue she wishes. With the aforementioned bills filed or about to be filed, Governor Lujan Grisham will be able to bring them to the floor for debate, which is what many legislators and pro-gun groups in New Mexico expect her to do.

During its December 12 meeting, the joint Interim Courts, Corrections, and Justice Committee (ICCJC) ultimately endorsed the bill for 14-day waiting periods on all firearm purchases, and a bill that would ban carrying firearms within 100 feet of any polling place. While the ICCJC’s endorsement has no legal weight, these endorsements nonetheless provide momentum to the proposals.

While not all of these bills may directly or immediately impact New Mexico’s many sportsmen and women, a few of them should be distressing to the sporting community. In particular, the 14-day waiting period, and the raising of the minimum age to possess a semi-automatic firearm to 21. Both of those bills will immediately impact any sportsman and woman who owns a firearm and will impact any hunter who hunts with their children (hampering recruitment efforts and negatively impacting conservation funding). Further, the legislation that would ban modern sporting rifles will impact the many thousand New Mexico hunters who use an MSR for lawful hunting and recreational purposes.

If you’re a New Mexican, please take a moment to contact your legislator and voice your opposition to this legislation. Stay tuned for additional updates on these efforts and how to be involved.

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