The Campbell County Board of Supervisors in Virginia declared themselves a “First Amendment Sanctuary” by a unanimous vote on Tuesday night, declaring that they will not be enforcing Governor Northam’s COVID-19 orders.
The First Amendment Sanctuary Resolution calls Governor Northam’s executive orders unconstitutional and instructs the sheriff and county employees to refrain from enforcing the orders.
“We’re not gonna utilize county resources to enforce the governor’s orders,” said Supervisor Matt Cline. “We’re not gonna allow county resources to be used in the enforcement by state agencies. We’re not gonna aid the Virginia Department of Health in shutting our businesses down.”
The resolution specifically defies Executive Orders 63 and 67. Executive Order 63 mandates the statewide wearing of masks in all public indoor spaces, and Executive Order 67 provides direction on how businesses are allowed to re-open.
“The Campbell County Board of Supervisors wishes to express its opposition to any order or law that would unconstitutionally restrict the rights of the citizens of Campbell County,” said Cline.
This isn’t the first time Campbell County has taken steps to align itself with the Constitution over and against state laws and policies. In 2019, the county declared itself a Second Amendment Sanctuary to protect its citizens gun rights in a state being directed more and more by progressive politics.
Campbell County residents who attended Tuesday’s meeting showed enthusiasm and support for the resolution.
Kurt Santini, a Campbell County resident, told ABC 13 News, “The governor has overstepped his authority and I hope this forces him to think outside of the tiny box he uses for a brain and to find a solution that doesn’t violate our rights.”
Santini plans to continue attending social gatherings, and refuses to wear a mask.
Likewise, Wes Gardner, another county resident, thanked the board for their actions, saying “it took guts.”
“Whether or not there are repercussions from Richmond,” Gardner said, “we don’t now. But I can tell you, we’ll stand with you.”
However, not every resident is on board with the resolution. James Sorello told ABC 13 News that the Constitution provides no protection against a deadly virus.
“If I hold the Constitution up, is that going to prevent me from getting the virus? We’re losing this battle; America is losing this battle.”
Campbell County isn’t the first to declare itself a “First Amendment Sanctuary”. A town in Rhode Island passed a similar resolution by the same name back in June.