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Sheriff "Unconstitutional gun laws will not be enforced."

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(CNN) -- An Oregon sheriff says he will not enforce any federal regulation that President Barack Obama lays out in his package of gun control proposals Wednesday.

Linn County Sheriff Tim Mueller joins several other public officials across the nation who have decided to square off with the White House even before it outlines what its plans are for expanded measures.

Mueller sent a letter to Vice President Joe Biden this week saying he won't enforce any federal regulation "offending the constitutional rights of my citizens." He won't permit federal officers to come to his county to enforce such laws either, he said.

Mueller's defiant stand exploded into a groundswell of support. His letter -- posted on the department's Facebook page -- earned more than 59,000 likes and shares -- and was growing by the minute.

Over the weekend, Sheriff Denny Peyman of Jackson County, Kentucky, said that he too would disobey any directive from the administration. He told residents in a town hall meeting that the sheriff has more power than the federal government.

"They need to go back and study that. We are a commonwealth. I can ask federal people to leave, they have to leave. I can ask state people to leave, they have to leave," he said.

But Wednesday on CNN, Peyman said he would enforce laws approved by Congress.

"If it goes through Congress, if it becomes law, if it goes that way, yeah, I'd enforce the law," he said.

In Texas, a lawmaker said this week that he will introduce legislation that would make it illegal to enforce a federal gun ban.

"At some point there needs to be a showdown between the states and the federal government over the Supremacy Clause," Republican Rep. Steve Toth told WOAI 1200-AM. "It is our responsibility to push back when those laws are infringed by King Obama."

New York passes first gun control bill since Newtown

Local officials don't get to make that call, CNN Senior Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin said.

"A sheriff does not get to decide whether laws are constitutional," he said. "Unless a court invalidates a law, he's obligated to enforce it."

In any event, local police wouldn't be responsible for enforcing federal gun laws, CNN Legal Analyst Paul Callan said.

"The FBI will be enforcing them, treasury agents will enforce them. It won't be local police who would be out making sure federal gun regulations are enforced," he said.

Obama's proposals Wednesday largely draw on the work of a task force chaired by Biden.

An official familiar with the process said the president's proposal will include universal background checks and bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.

Other recommendations by Biden's panel include tougher enforcement of existing laws, legislators briefed by the vice president said Tuesday.

Support surprises sheriff

In Linn County, the support for Mueller's letter caught the sheriff's office by surprise.

"Sheriff Tim Mueller is humbled and amazed at the support people near and far have expressed to his letter. Thank you!" said a post on the department's Facebook page.

A post by Jill Leiser Crowley of Eugene expressed the opinions of many.

Senator: Obama acting like a 'king'

"Thank you for standing up for our Constitutional Rights!!!" it said. "You are doing the right thing for the people of Linn County - I can only hope other counties will follow!!!"

But Karin Hunt, another Oregonian, questioned the sheriff's stance.

"I would expect (an) officer to enforce the laws of Oregon and the U.S.A. whether he agrees with the law or not," she said. "That's taking the law into your own hands."

The White House knows it can expect a fight.

"Part of the challenge we confront is that even the slightest hint of some sensible, responsible legislation in this area fans this notion that somehow, 'Here it comes, everybody's guns are going to be taken away,' " Obama said Monday.

Getting any legislation passed may prove to be difficult.

The influential National Rifle Association, among other gun rights groups, has vowed to fight tooth and nail against any new gun restrictions -- like an assault weapons ban, which the group's president, David Keene, predicted Sunday wouldn't make it through Congress.

Polls support change

Although some officials have come out against new gun control laws, Americans as a whole are looking for some sort of change after the Newtown, Connecticut, shootings last month that took the lives of 20 grade school children and seven adults.

By a 51%-45% margin, Americans questioned in a new Pew Research Center poll said it was more important to control gun ownership than to protect gun rights.

And by a 52%-35% margin, a new ABC News/Washington Post survey indicates the public says it is more likely to support some forms of gun control after last month's massacre. However, the polls showed continuing divisions along political and gender lines.

Still, one Oregon resident warned against passing laws that would conflict with the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms.

"Constitutional changes must be made properly with Congressional and judicial approval, and by a majority of the citizens of the USA, not by the order of a tyrant in Washington D.C.!!!" said Rick Carter of Pendleton. "I stand with the brave Sheriff!"

The battle lines could not be clearer.

CNN's Michael Pearson contributed to this report.

by on Jan. 18, 2013 at 10:38 AM
Replies (21-30):
JoshRachelsMAMA
by JRM on Jan. 18, 2013 at 11:58 AM
Thanks for clarifying. It's sounds much better when you say it. :)

Quoting Erinelizz:

An EO does not circumvent the law or Constitution; rather, it implements or interprets a federal statute, a constitutional provision, or a treaty.





Quoting JoshRachelsMAMA:

The President himself has no respect for the Constitution. There should be no surprise when others do the same. By the way, executive orders are not laws, they are exactly what they are - "orders" to the executive branch of government to circumvent either the Constitution or other laws that are in effect.





If the Executive branch of the Federal Government picks and chooses which laws they will or will not enforce, then the Sheriff has a "fine" example to go by.






Quoting terpmama:

And we wonder why kids these days have no respect for parents, teachers or anyone in authority.... Stop throwing a hissy fit and go through proper channels. There's ways to do this legally and while respecting the laws he claims to support.


Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
KreatingMe
by Silver Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:03 PM
4 moms liked this

Once again there are certain police officers who can't distinguish between upholding laws and making laws. So often they seem to mistake themselves for judge and jury. Perhaps some of them should go on to law school, if that's what they really want. It is NOT their job to interpret laws, decide their constitutionality, or worth, nullify them or agree with them! If they can not or will not stay within the parameters of their job they should be fired immediately. Especially when they openly express their refusal to stay within the limits of their authority. 


Arroree
by Ruby Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:03 PM



Quoting jaxTheMomm:

I wonder which ones he thinks are unconstitutional?

That's assuming he's educated tnough to understand the constitution in the first place, which it's fairly obvious he's not.

Sisteract
by Whoopie on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:05 PM

EXACTLY!

Quoting terpmama:

And we wonder why kids these days have no respect for parents, teachers or anyone in authority.... Stop throwing a hissy fit and go through proper channels. There's ways to do this legally and while respecting the laws he claims to support.


Erinelizz
by Bronze Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:07 PM
1 mom liked this
I can't take credit--I just googled the definition because I couldn't find a good way to word it either ;)

Quoting JoshRachelsMAMA:

Thanks for clarifying. It's sounds much better when you say it. :)



Quoting Erinelizz:

An EO does not circumvent the law or Constitution; rather, it implements or interprets a federal statute, a constitutional provision, or a treaty.








Quoting JoshRachelsMAMA:

The President himself has no respect for the Constitution. There should be no surprise when others do the same. By the way, executive orders are not laws, they are exactly what they are - "orders" to the executive branch of government to circumvent either the Constitution or other laws that are in effect.







If the Executive branch of the Federal Government picks and chooses which laws they will or will not enforce, then the Sheriff has a "fine" example to go by.








Quoting terpmama:

And we wonder why kids these days have no respect for parents, teachers or anyone in authority.... Stop throwing a hissy fit and go through proper channels. There's ways to do this legally and while respecting the laws he claims to support.



Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
Arroree
by Ruby Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:08 PM

Exactly. The last thing we need or want is a bunch of cops that outright refuse to uphold the law and are actually so full of their own importance that they go to national news to announce that they refuse to uphold the law. Fire their asses and hire some cops that will actually do the job they're paid to do.


Quoting KreatingMe:

Once again there are certain police officers who can't distinguish between upholding laws and making laws. So often they seem to mistake themselves for judge and jury. Perhaps some of them should go on to law school, if that's what they really want. It is NOT their job to interpret laws, decide their constitutionality, or worth, nullify them or agree with them! If they can not or will not do stay within the parameters of their job they should be fired immediately. Especially when they openly express their refusal to stay within the limits of their authority. 




momtimesx4
by Gold Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:09 PM
1 mom liked this


Can't even get the U.S. Attorney General to do the right thing.

Quoting Arroree:

Exactly. The last thing we need or want is a bunch of cops that outright refuse to uphold the law and are actually so full of their own importance that they go to national news to announce that they refuse to uphold the law. Fire their asses and hire some cops that will actually do the job they're paid to do.


Quoting KreatingMe:

Once again there are certain police officers who can't distinguish between upholding laws and making laws. So often they seem to mistake themselves for judge and jury. Perhaps some of them should go on to law school, if that's what they really want. It is NOT their job to interpret laws, decide their constitutionality, or worth, nullify them or agree with them! If they can not or will not do stay within the parameters of their job they should be fired immediately. Especially when they openly express their refusal to stay within the limits of their authority. 






shannonnigans
by Platinum Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:18 PM
2 moms liked this
And it has to be overturned by one of the other branches, not by small town Sheriff who says "I don't like this one."


Quoting Erinelizz:

An EO does not circumvent the law or Constitution; rather, it implements or interprets a federal statute, a constitutional provision, or a treaty.





Quoting JoshRachelsMAMA:

The President himself has no respect for the Constitution. There should be no surprise when others do the same. By the way, executive orders are not laws, they are exactly what they are - "orders" to the executive branch of government to circumvent either the Constitution or other laws that are in effect.





If the Executive branch of the Federal Government picks and chooses which laws they will or will not enforce, then the Sheriff has a "fine" example to go by.






Quoting terpmama:

And we wonder why kids these days have no respect for parents, teachers or anyone in authority.... Stop throwing a hissy fit and go through proper channels. There's ways to do this legally and while respecting the laws he claims to support.



Posted on CafeMom Mobile
bellawomen
by Bronze Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:20 PM

Since when do sheriffs get to interpret whether laws are unconstitutional/constitutional?  They ENFORCE laws, even the ones they oppose.  This guy is a arrogant NRA member getting his panties in a bunch for public attention.

momtimesx4
by Gold Member on Jan. 18, 2013 at 12:29 PM

The sheriff jumped the gun before anythng was really announced by Obama, who in fact just put out his Executive Action wish list and not a real Executive Orders, which can be ignored and supplemented via the states firearms freedom act and matters related to the commerce clause and the 10th Amendment.

Although localities differ, look into what powers your local sheriff actually has.  Especially the elected sheriffs.

Quoting bellawomen:

Since when do sheriffs get to interpret whether laws are unconstitutional/constitutional?  They ENFORCE laws, even the ones they oppose.  This guy is a arrogant NRA member getting his panties in a bunch for public attention.



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