Local officials across Virginia are resisting the push from Virginia Democrats to adopt gun-free zones.
Lawmakers in Powhatan County—located just outside Richmond— unanimously passed a "No Local Gun Control" resolution that would prevent localities from creating gun-free zones. The debate over gun restrictions that dominated Gov. Ralph Northam's (D.) agenda in the early months of 2020 has moved back to the local level after state Democrats passed a law allowing local governments to ban the presence of firearms at certain buildings and events. Larry Nordvig, the independent Powhatan County supervisor who introduced the county's resolution, told the Washington Free Beacon he hopes the resolution sends a message to the statehouse.
"The tension is growing and the blame is entirely theirs," he said. "Our natural-born rights are being eroded at lightning speed, and I intend to help citizens stand against government overreach. This resolution contained a plan of action to defund any unconstitutional actions. The time for talk is over. It's time for action."
Powhatan is the fifth county to pass the resolution since the new gun-control measures went into effect in July. Other cities have embraced the new regulatory power, with Alexandria, Newport News, and Richmond using the state law to establish gun bans in government buildings, parks, and at permitted events. The gun-free zone debate sets the stage for a second showdown between liberal strongholds, Democratic leaders, and the rest of the state over more restrictive gun laws.