The city of St. Louis and St. Louis County on Monday filed a lawsuit seeking to overturn a law signed by Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) earlier this month that fines law enforcement agencies that are found to be enforcing federal gun laws.
As The Associated Press reports, the lawsuit was filed in Cole County Circuit Court and seeks to halt enforcement of the law and have it overturned, arguing that it violates the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause, which says that federal law overrules state laws.
Democratic St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones argues that the law is unconstitutional and dangerous, noting that last year was Missouri's deadliest yet in terms of gun violence.
"#HB85 makes it more difficult for law enforcement to do their job: stopping violent crime. #moleg is once again throwing up barriers that make communities less safe," Jones tweeted on Monday.
#HB85 makes it more difficult for law enforcement to do their job: stopping violent crime. #moleg is once again throwing up barriers that make communities less safe.— Mayor Tishaura O. Jones (@saintlouismayor) June 21, 2021
Proud to join @DrSamPage to fight back against this harmful and unconstitutional law. https://t.co/gEYwpaG0hw pic.twitter.com/8QbBbEFoyu
The Department of Justice warned Missouri officials in a letter last week that the state could not ignore federal laws, but Parson and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt (R) have said they plan to enforce the new law anyway.
Chris Nuelle, a spokesperson for Schmitt, called the St. Louis lawsuit a “partisan” maneuver carried out by “progressive politicians.”
“We will continue our efforts to prosecute violent crime, and we will not shy away from defending the Second Amendment rights of law abiding citizens,” Nuelle said, according to the AP.