Richard Mack - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Richard Ivan Mack is the former sheriff of Graham County, Arizona, and a two-time candidate for United States Congress. He is frequently referred to simply as "Sheriff Mack."

Law enforcement career[edit]

Mack spent eleven years with the police department of Provo, Utah, and then moved back to Arizona to run for Graham County Sheriff in 1988. While serving as sheriff, he attended the FBI National Academy and graduated in 1992. In 1994, he was named Elected Official of the Year by the Arizona-New Mexico Coalition of Counties. He was also named the National Rifle Association Law Enforcement Officer of the Year for 1994, and was inducted into the NRA Hall of Fame.[1]

Mack v. United States[edit]

During his tenure as sheriff, Mack received national attention for initiating Mack v. United States (later restyled to Printz v. United States), a lawsuit against the federal government which alleged that portions of the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act violated the United States Constitution, because they comprised a congressional action that compelled state officers to execute Federal law.[2] These portions were interim provisions until a national instant background check system for gun purchasers could be implemented. In a 5–4 decision, the Supreme Court ruled that the provisions of the Brady Act in question were, in fact, unconstitutional.[3]

Campaigns for Congress[edit]

Mack ran as a Libertariancandidate for United States Senate in Arizona in 2006.

In 2012, Mack opposed 13-term Representative Lamar Smith, who introduced and sponsored the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act legislation, in the House election Republican primary for Texas's 21st Congressional district. The primary was held on May 29. Mack lost, receiving 14.78% (10,111) of the votes.

Defamation lawsuit[edit]

Mack announced in 2011 that he was initiating a lawsuit against the Southern Poverty Law Center for libel, slander, and defamation.[4]

Personal life[edit]

Mack was born in 1952[5] in Arizona.[1] He is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and attended Brigham Young University.[6]

Political views[edit]

In 2009, Mack appeared in interviews on a cable public access show[7] and a one-person website,[8][9][10][11][12][13] in which he discussed his membership in Oath Keepers, and the importance of police officers and members of the military upholding their oaths to the U.S. Constitution.

He currently speaks at various events as "a strong advocate of states' rights and individual freedoms."[14]


In April, 2014, Mack asserted that as part of the citizen response to the Bundy standoff that "We were actually strategizing to put all the women up at the front. If they're gonna start shooting, it's going to be women that are gonna be televised all across the world getting shot by these rogue federal officers." [15]


Mack has authored several books relating to gun laws, ownership and the role that law enforcement should play in America.


External links[edit]

NameMack, Richard
Alternative names"Sheriff Mack"
Short descriptionArizona sheriff
Date of birth1952
Place of birthArizona
Date of death
Place of death