"It's a buzzword, a word that really gets attention. With all these sanctuary cities, we just decided to turn it around to protect our Second Amendment rights," an official of the Effingham County Board told AP. Effingham County is a small county in southern Illinois with a population of around 35,000 people, according 2010 census data.
Effingham County and five other counties in the Midwestern state have passed resolutions that could ban local authorities from complying with state or federal laws that have been discussed, such as age restrictions for certain firearms, bump stock bans, and magazine size limits.
The county says that more than 20 other counties in Illinois and officials in the Pacific Northwest states of Oregon and Washington have requested copies of the text used in the resolution to make Effingham County a "sanctuary" for gun advocates.
"We're just stealing the language that sanctuary cities use," said Bryan Kibler, the highest ranking prosecutor in Effingham County. The prosecutor said that the symbolic gesture is meant to "get across that our Second Amendment rights are slowly being stripped away."
While he stopped short of discussing how the county would handle specific new regulations or laws from state or federal authorities, Kibler said lawmakers should be aware that "if you pass it we might not pay attention to it."