PALO PINTO – Failed Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke won't be coming for anyone's rifles or other firearms. If anyone else does, Palo Pinto County will have no part in it.
The county on Tuesday became the eighth one in Texas to declare itself a "Second Amendment Sanctuary County" to protect citizens' legal rights to keep and bear arms.
Perhaps surprisingly – or perhaps not – no citizens appeared before commissioners Tuesday morning to speak for or against the resolution despite its advance notice published in the newspaper and on social media sites.
Palo Pinto County joined seven others in the state, including Parker and Hood counties, to declare their citizens safe from any actions to unconstitutionally confiscate their firearms.
Before bowing out of the 2020 presidential race, O'Rourke famously said during a televised Democratic candidates debate, "Hell, yes, we are going to take your AR-15."
His comment was the latest, but far from the first, to stoke concerns among law-abiding gun owners about increased rhetoric and efforts in Washington and state capitals across the U.S. to change gun ownership laws.
Like similar resolutions – which are being passed in mostly rural and conservative counties in Texas as well as many western areas of the nation – the Palo Pinto County resolution says commissioners court "affirms its support for the duly elected sheriff of Palo Pinto County, Texas, in the exercise of his sound discretion, and affirms its resolve to support decisions made by our sheriff to uphold the Constitution of the United States."
Palo Pinto County Sheriff Brett McGuire used his social media last week to announce his support of the Second Amendment and the county resolution, as well as all rights afforded people under the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.
McGuire on Tuesday told commissioners his department would not undertake actions in opposition to anyone's constitutional rights.
"I think we all took that oath to support the constitution," McGuire stated. "It doesn't mean we are not going to enforce the laws. It just means we are not going to use our time our resources on items that are deemed unconstitutional."
With that, commissioners passed the resolution unanimously, 5-0.