BELLEVUE, WA – Once again when faced with a controversy, Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels is reviving his plan to ban legally-carried firearms from city property, and the Second Amendment Foundation today promises once again to immediately take him to court.
“This time around,” said SAF founder Alan Gottlieb, “Mayor Nickels needs to raise this issue to distract public attention from the political smell arising from the snow plowing investigation. We remind the mayor that his office has been warned by Attorney General Rob McKenna that neither he, nor the city, has the authority to enact such a ban under state preemption.
“Mayor Nickels thinks he can enact this ban merely by executive order,” Gottlieb observed. “He’s not even thinking of putting this before the city council as a proposed ordinance, because he knows it would never pass. Greg Nickels is the mayor of Seattle, not the emperor of a city-state.”
Nickels’ plan was revealed by the Seattle Weekly Tuesday morning. A spokesman for the mayor’s office told the newspaper that the ban “is expected to begin sometime in May.” Gottlieb said SAF expects to be joined in a legal action by other gun rights organizations.
“Mayor Nickels evidently believes he is above the law, and that ‘if the mayor does it, it is not illegal’,” said Joe Waldron, legislative director for the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. “You might as well call him ‘President Nixon’.”
“At the public hearing on this issue in December,” Gottlieb recalled, “people were literally lining up to be involved in a lawsuit. Nickels and his staff are trying to portray the opposition as coming from outside the city, but that argument is specious at best. Whether people just visit the city frequently, work in Seattle or live there, they have every right to expect Seattle to comply with state statute.
“If the mayor thinks this will divert attention away from the snow plowing controversy,” Gottlieb said, “he’s mistaken. This ploy won’t cure that headache. It will only give him another.”