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Category Archives: Second Amendment

4th Circuit Rules Common Rifles not Protected by Second Amendment – AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

Posted: February 26, 2017 at 10:55 pm


AmmoLand Shooting Sports News
4th Circuit Rules Common Rifles not Protected by Second Amendment
AmmoLand Shooting Sports News
Arizona -(Ammoland.com)-On 21 February, 2017, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that common semi-automatic rifles are not protected by the Second Amendment of the Constitution. The ban includes semi-automatic rifles that can take detachable …

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Second Amendment does not cover ‘weapons of war,’ US …

Posted: February 25, 2017 at 2:57 pm

February 22, 2017 “Assault weapons” are not covered by the Second Amendment, a federal appeals court has found.

On Tuesday, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals voted 10-4 to uphold a Maryland law, which bans 45 kinds of guns and places a 10-round limit on gun magazines. The law implemented after the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting that killed 20 students and six teachers in Newtown, Conn. is intended to protect against gun violence.

For Judge Robert King and the majority in this ruling, certain kinds of rifles are weapons of war, meaning they are not covered under the Second Amendmentfor the purpose of self-defense. That distinction is explicitly drawn in the 2008 Supreme Court decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, Mr. King wrote.

Others on the court sided with gun rights advocates, arguing that the right to bear arms does not depend on the weapon chosen, and noting the popularity of military style rifles.

“For a law-abiding citizen who, for whatever reason, chooses to protect his home with a semi-automatic rifle instead of a semi-automatic handgun, Maryland’s law clearly imposes a significant burden on the exercise of the right to arm oneself at home, wrote Judge William Traxlerin a dissent, calling for a stringent review of the decision.

In the wake of shootings like Sandy Hook and Orlando, where so-called military-style “assault” rifles were used, local communities and advocacy groups have pushed for limits on the types of weapons available for sale. After the Orlando shooting, 57 percent of Americans supported a nationwide ban on assault weapons, according to a CBS News poll.

Similar gun control bills have struggled to gain traction in Congress, leaving states to implement their own bans as they see fit. Currently, seven states and the District of Columbia have enacted laws banning semiautomatic rifles, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, a gun control advocacy group.

Some of these laws have faced legal challenges on Second Amendment grounds. In the case of Maryland, the National Rifle Association is exploring its options for appealing the ruling, NRA spokeswoman Jennifer Baker told the Associated Press.

“It is absurd to hold that the most popular rifle in America is not a protected ‘arm’ under the Second Amendment, she said, saying the NRA estimates between 5 million and 10 million AR-15s are currently owned legally in the United States. That means, she indicated, that the Maryland ruling goes against a provision inD.C. v. Heller that protects weapons that are in common and lawful use at the time from being banned.

The US Supreme Court has been reluctant to hear such Second Amendment challenges, however. In June, the nations highest court declined to take up cases against similar gun bans in New York and Connecticut.

Legal scholars suggest the Supreme Court typically wont get involved unless lower courts cant reach consensus. In that way, they say, the Supreme Court gives tacit approval to state bans on certain kinds of guns.

The Maryland law, which supporters say backs up the states interest in protecting public safety, is still open to scrutiny at the lower level, and it remains to be seen whether the Supreme Court would consider any Second Amendment challenge.

“Governments are now in the process of testing what restraints the Court will consider to be reasonable and which it will not, John Vile, a constitutional scholar at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, told Henry Gass for The Christian Science Monitor in June.

This report contains material from the Associated Press and Reuters.

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Georgia Rep. Lumsden: The Second Amendment is a Right, NOT a Privilege – Bearing Arms

Posted: February 24, 2017 at 6:02 pm

On Monday, February 20, the Georgia House Public Safety and Homeland SecurityCommittees were scheduled tobegin to review a number of important gun bills.

Georgia StateRepresentativeEddie Lumsden, R-Rome, a retired State Trooper who sits on these committees, said:These are somemodified bills, after having conversations with the governor.

In their current state, he expects them to be more acceptable.

HB 280would allow people with their Georgia Weapons License (GWL) to carry concealed on all property owned or leased by a public institution of post-secondary education. There are minimal exemptions, sports facilities, student housing including sororities and frat houses, and campus preschools. Rep. Lumsden, who is in favor of this bill, points to the Second Amendment in part, for his support of the right to carry on college campuses.

HB 292 would impact Georgia gun laws in several positive and important ways, including:

HB 406aims totarget reciprocity between states and will affect Virginia reciprocity directly throughits code changes.

Most conservatives dont believe its wise of government to require training because this is a right, not a privilege, said Representative Eddie Lumsden. We all believe it would be a good thing, if youre going to carry a weapon, you be trained in its use. But this gets into constitutional questions.

If you live in Georgia, contact yourlegislatorson both committees and let them know how you feel about these bills.

Author’s Bio: Pamela Jablonski

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Keith Ellison’s comments on the Second Amendment: For the record – Washington Post

Posted: at 6:02 pm

CNNs Dana Bash: Congressman. Gun control. In 2014, you told Bill Maher that you wished the Democratic Party would come out against the Second Amendment. How do you reach out to Americans who support gun rights when you dont support the Second Amendment?

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.): First of all, let me tell you I remember that show very well, and that is not what I said at all. What I talked about is my grandfathers shotgun, the fact that I am a turkey hunter, and I didnt say that. That was not an accurate statement. []

Bash: Congressman, I just want to read you since you said that that wasnt what you said, Ill read you exactly what happened. Bill Maher: Then why doesnt your party come out against the Second Amendment? Its the problem. Your response: I sure wish they would. I sure wish they would.

Ellison: I wish youd play the tape, because if you did youd see that it did not go that way. But the real point is this, this country absolutely, I am for the right to bear arms, but I am not for these massive murders that happen all over this country every day. exchange during CNN debate with candidates for Democratic National Committee leadership, Feb. 22, 2017

During the debate on CNN, Ellison denied making comments about the Second Amendment during a March 2014 interview on Real Time with Bill Maher. We were curious to know exactly what he said during the interview, and whether he was being truthful in his response to Bash.

Since Ellison said to check the clips, we did. We found that the answer is not really clear, so we decided to present the comments in full for our readers.

The exchange in question begins around the four-minute mark in the video below. (A higher-quality video is here.)

Earlier in the clip, Ellison talks about family members who own guns and go hunting, and says that he is for gun control, but I dont think you have got to eliminate ownership of all guns in order to get some common-sense gun rules.

Later, Maher asks: Then why doesnt your party come out against the Second Amendment? Its the problem.

The crowd laughs, and then Sheila Bair, former chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., interjects. She seems to say: Fifty-one votes, thats all it takes. The crowd, Bair and Ellison all laugh. Ellison then says: I sure wish they would, I sure wish they would.

Ellisons campaign staff says his answer was a reference to Bairs comment, and not an answer to Mahers question.

Bair, through a spokesman, said the vote she was referring to was the nomination of former Surgeon General Vivek Murthy. At the time of this interview, Murthy had been waiting for confirmation for 16 months and could not get the 51 votes in the Senate to get confirmed. She thinks that nomination started the conversation [about gun control]. But it was a long time ago, her spokesman said.

Murthys nomination had been in limbo, partly because of opposition from the gun lobby. The National Rifle Association had called him a serious threat to the rights of gun owners because Murthy supported stricter gun control laws:

Even moderate Senate Democrats from states with strong gun cultures opposed Murthy. At the time of the Maher interview, the White House was considering withdrawing Murthys troubled nomination, after it became clear moderate Democrats up for reelection would not support Murthy because of his stance on gun control.

Heres a transcript:

Sheila Bair: Im a Republican and Im for gun control. I just want to be its not monolithic. Keith Ellison: Well, Im for gun control, too. Let me just say, Im for gun control but I dont think you have got to eliminate ownership of all guns in order to get some common-sense gun rules. Bair: No, you dont. Ellison: I mean, 27 children were mowed down. Isnt that enough for us? One of our colleagues, [former congresswoman] Gabby Giffords, shot in the face. Maher: Then why doesnt your party come out against the Second Amendment? Its the problem. [Crosstalk] Ellison: Bill Bair: Fifty-one votes, thats all it takes. [Laughter] Ellison: I sure wish they would. I sure wish they would. Maher: Really? Ellison: Yeah. Maher: Because I never hear anybody in the Democratic Party say that. But they say, I am also a strong supporter. Ellison: You have got to check out the progressive caucus. We have come out very strong for common-sense gun safety rules.

After some back-and-forth with Maher, Ellison later says: You cant solve the problem with just one little thing. Youve got to make sure that the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] can issue reports on gun killings and handgun violence. Youve got to make sure that we can get rid of assault weapons. Youve got to close the loophole at gun shows. Youve got to do a whole range of things to get us into a sane place. Weve got 12,000 handgun murders a year. Its got to stop.

Its not entirely clear whether Ellison really was talking about Murthys nomination, the Second Amendment or votes on gun-control measures in general. But it is clear throughout the interview that Ellison says he supports both gun-control measures and the rights of gun owners. At one point, he says he is for gun control, but I dont think you have got to eliminate ownership of all guns in order to get some common-sense gun rules.

Of course, supporters of gun rights likely would consider the measures Ellison proposes as effectively gutting Second Amendment rights. Still, there seems to be more going on in the conversation that is not immediately clear in the transcripts that Dana Bash read during the debate. A constitutional amendment that would have nullified the Second Amendment would requirea two-thirds vote by the House and Senate, and then ratification by three-fourths of the states. So Bairs interjection of 51 votes makes it likely that theexchange was alluding to Murthys confirmation, rather than a constitutional amendment.

Given the murky information at hand, we will not rate this claim. We welcome readers to reach their own conclusions.

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Keith Ellison’s comments on the Second Amendment: For the record – Washington Post

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Editorial: Second Amendment rights aren’t a gift from the courts – Tyler Morning Telegraph

Posted: at 6:02 pm

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals is going to war with the U.S. Supreme Courts Heller decision, and its reasoning is both troubling and erroneous. Essentially, the court says Americans have no inherent right to own vaguely defined assault weapons.

That ruling, if later upheld by a post-Scalia Supreme Court, would gut the Second Amendment – which was never about hunting.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled that the Second Amendment doesnt protect assault weapons – an extraordinary decision keenly attuned to the brutal havoc these firearms can wreak, writes Slate magazine. Issued by the court sitting en banc, Tuesdays decision reversed a previous ruling in which a panel of judges had struck down Marylands ban on assault weapons and detachable large capacity magazines.

The majority opinion begins with an appeal to emotion, by citing a list of recent shootings. It then goes on to invent an entirely new test for Second Amendment policy – whether guns or devices have a military purpose.

Whatever their other potential, the court wrote, such weapons are unquestionably most useful in military service. That is, the banned assault weapons are designed to kill or disable the enemy on the battlefield.

These military combat features have a capability for lethality – more wounds, more serious, in more victims – far beyond that of other firearms in general, including other semiautomatic guns.

As Slate sums up, the AR-15 is a weapon of war, not the tool of self-defense envisioned by the Heller court, and therefore can and should be regulated.

Thats flawed reasoning, says Daniel Horowitz in the Conservative Review.

The notion that any common weapon can be banned violates the inalienable right to self-defense, which predated the Second Amendment, he writes. It is a natural right. Yet, given that we live in a world where rights come from the Supreme Court, we should at least ensure that lower courts properly read the text of the Heller decision.

He quotes Justice Scalia, who wrote that majority opinion: A constitutional guarantee subject to future judges assessments of its usefulness is no constitutional guarantee at all. Constitutional rights are enshrined with the scope they were understood to have when the people adopted them, whether or not future legislatures or (yes) even future judges think that scope too broad.

The Fourth Circuit says its balancing interests – the right of self-defense versus public safety. That, too, is flawed, Horowitz contends.

There is no government interest balancing for perceived benefits of public safety that can justify the infringement upon the right to self-defense for any commonly held weapon used for lawful purposes, he writes.

And thats clearly laid out in Heller.

We are aware of the problem of handgun violence in this country, and we take seriously the concerns raised by the many who believe that prohibition of handgun ownership is a solution, that decision reads. But the enshrinement of constitutional rights necessarily takes certain policy choices off the table.

The Fourth Circuit was wrong in its reasoning and in its ruling.

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A Federal Court of Appeals Goes to War against the Second Amendment – National Review

Posted: February 23, 2017 at 12:54 pm

What happens when you mix contempt for individual rights with a healthy dose of willful ignorance and fear? You get the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, the court thats teaching the legal Left the recipe for attacking the Second Amendment.

Twice in less than a month, the court has radically restricted the constitutional rights of gun owners. In January, it held that even lawful gun owners are inherently dangerous and can face limitations on their constitutional rights, including the right to be free of unreasonable search and seizure, simply because they possess a gun. In the words of a concurring judge:

In sum, individuals who carry firearms lawfully or unlawfully pose a risk of danger to themselves, law enforcement officers, and the public at large. Accordingly, law enforcement officers may frisk lawfully stopped individuals whom the officers reasonably suspect are carrying a firearm because a detainees possession of a firearm poses a categorical danger to the officers.

But this holding, as dangerous as it is, pales in comparison with the courts decision yesterday, when it not only upheld Marylands assault-weapons ban but categorically stated that the Second Amendment does not protect the right to own so-called assault weapons or the right to own a magazine that holds more than ten rounds of ammunition.

How can it reach such a conclusion? Remember the formula: contempt, willful ignorance, and fear.

First, lets look at the courts breathtaking contempt for individual rights. Rather than read the Supreme Courts controlling opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller according to its plain language, it deliberately distorts Justice Antonin Scalias majority opinion. In Heller, Scalia clearly stated that the sorts of weapons the Second Amendment protects are those that are in common use at the time, with exceptions that apply to those weapons that are dangerous and unusual.

Why the addition of and unusual? Because every single working gun ever made is dangerous. To illustrate his point, Scalia then provides examples of specific types of dangerous and unusual guns M-16 rifles and the like. Heres a news flash: The M-16 isnt the same as a civilian assault weapon like the AR-15. The M-16 variants in use in the United States military are capable of being fired in both semi-automatic and fully automatic (three-round burst) modes. If you think that the M-16 and AR-15 are alike, then walk to your local gun store and try to buy an M-16.

Go ahead. Ill wait.

Are you back yet? Do you have an M-16? No? Thats because its an entirely different category of weapon, governed by different federal statutes. The Fourth Circuit, however, deliberately conflated semi-automatic weapons and automatic weapons. And it went to absurd lengths to do so. To illustrate how, lets turn to the next part of the formula willful ignorance.

RELATED: The Fourth Circuit Runs Roughshod over Heller and the Second Amendment

In discussing the civilian, semi-automatic AR-15, the court comprehensively described the history of the military, fully automatic weapon that became the M-16 (and also the lighter and shorter M-4). Then, attempting to equate the M-16 and the AR-15, it published this spit-out-your-coffee sentence: Semiautomatic weapons can be fired at rates of 300 to 500 rounds per minute, making them virtually indistinguishable in practical effect from machineguns.

The word rates does a lot of work in that sentence. Yes, a person can pull the trigger very quickly on a semi-auto rifle (of any type) for a very short time. No, you cannot send 300 to 500 rounds downrange in one minute. You cant even do it with an M-16 in burst mode.

To the Fourth Circuit, every shooters the same as the legendary Jerry Miculek:

But wait, he can do the exact same thing with an M1 Garand, an actual (more powerful) military weapon thats specifically exempted from Marylands ban. As the dissent notes, under the majoritys reasoning, it is legal in Maryland to possess a rifle that was actually used by our military on the battlefield, but illegal to possess a rifle never used by our military.

The majority also argues that the AR-15 is like the M-16 because soldiers typically fire their weapons in semi-automatic mode. True enough. They also use exclusively semi-auto pistols, sometimes use bolt-action sniper rifles, and brought pump-action shotguns to combat for generations. By that reasoning, virtually every firearm is like a military weapon.

What really is the limiting principle? Thats where we get to the final ingredient in the unconstitutional stew fear.

The court begins its opinion by reciting the horrible facts of the Sandy Hook massacre. It then walks through shooting after shooting in which the killers used assault weapons, high-capacity magazines, or both. These anecdotes are horrible, but the plural of anecdote is not data, and the data show that fewer people are murdered by rifles than by fists or feet and that a previous nationwide assault-weapons ban led to no discernible reduction in the lethality and injuriousness of gun violence. Indeed, even if the ban had been renewed, its effects on gun violence [were] likely to be small at best and perhaps too small for reliable measurement.

Even more perniciously, the court hypes the fear of mass shootings at the same time that it takes from civilians the best weapon for confronting a mass shooter a semi-automatic handgun carrying a high-capacity magazine. Even though law-abiding holders of concealed-carry permits commit less crime than the police (more data for the court) and have stopped mass shootings time and again, the Fourth Circuit mandates that they be outgunned in the face of the common threat of a large-capacity magazine.

Lets put this as plainly as possible. This court has determined that your right to self-defense is limited to the use of weapons less effective than those used in the most notorious massacres. In other words, criminals define your rights. Whatever gun they choose to use in the rarest of crimes, youre going to have to settle for less, even if the criminal retains broad and easy access to superior firepower. After all, the Fourth Circuit, in its infinite gun wisdom, has determined that no one has needed to fire more than ten rounds to protect himself.

Heres the bottom line, citizens of Maryland: A federal court has defied the Supreme Court and decided that the constitutional right to keep and bear arms is limited to those guns that have no modern military analog and have not (yet) been used to carry out a mass shooting. So dust off those pearl-handled revolvers. Learn to shoot like Doc Holliday. Criminals wont comply with Marylands brainless law, so your aim had better beat their firepower.

In two key cases, deception, fear, and ignorance have overcome the Constitution. This is how Heller dies one defiant decision at a time.

David French is a staff writer for National Review, a senior fellow at the National Review Institute, and an attorney.

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Keith Ellison denies saying Democrats should come out against 2nd amendment, guns – Washington Times

Posted: at 12:54 pm

Rep. Keith Ellison denied Thursday that he previously said the Democratic Party should come out against the Second Amendment right of individuals to keep and bear arms.

That is not what I said at all, Mr. Ellison said during a CNN debate between the candidates seeking to lead the Democratic National Committee, after he was asked about a 2012 appearance he made on Real Time with Bill Maher.

In the episode, Mr. Ellison told the HBO host that he supported common-sense gun rules.

When Mr. Maher countered that the party should come out against the Second Amendment, Mr. Ellison said, I sure wish they would. I sure wish they would.

In the CNN debate, Mr. Ellison said his comments are being taken out of context.

I did not say that, he said. That was not an accurate statement.

The Minnesota Democrat then said he hunts with a conservative Democrat in rural Minnesota and said that he supports stricter background checks for guns.

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Central Florida’s LGBTQ Community Begins to Embrace Second Amendment – Bearing Arms

Posted: at 12:54 pm

Just weeks after the mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida, the local Orlando gay community reached out to NRA Certified Firearms InstructorJo Martinin an effort to start their own Pink Pistols chapter.

Now, almost nine months later, the Central Florida chapter of Pink Pistols has noticed an increase in attendance at their monthly meetings. The Pulse tragedy, although recognized by the LGBTQ community as a terror incident, has also reaffirmed their vulnerability as it relates to hate crimes and the need for self defense. In fact, there was so much interest in the group that Martin is now starting a second organization shes calling the Rainbow Shooting Club.

Martin saidthrough a generous donation made by a Connecticut gun manufacturer, the firearms classes are now being provided to the LGBTQ community free of charge. The grant covers everything: the costs of the training materials, instruction, range time, rental firearms, evenammunition.

The thought of me holding a gun is terrifying, said Diana Georgey, who signed up for the classes. She told NBC affiliateWESH-TV. It (the Pulse Shooting) affected me in a way that I felt like I cant ever go anywhere and be safe.

According to Martin, this was the sentiment of a majority of her LGBTQ students. However, she has noticed a change. The group now appears to be embracing not just firearms, but an overall support of the Second Amendment.

Martin, a Scottish immigrant to the United States and staunch Second Amendment advocate, said she never discussed politics in her classes before, but thats changed. Many of her LGBTQ students have questions and they cant be ignored. She said this community has so much misinformation, especially about conservatives and the Second Amendment.

The media is negative and divisive and Im just glad I can provide factual information that I hope can open up some minds, said Martin. Its ok to have a difference of opinion, but conservatives are much more tolerant than the media gives us credit for; why is it we have to have a tragedy of this magnitude to bring people together? We need to make it clear that we cherish not only our rights, but each other too.

Through the efforts of Jo Martin, her training crew, and their positive Second Amendment advocacy, the Central Florida Pink Pistols, a previously skeptical community now understands the importance of embracing and supporting their Second Amendment right to bear arms.

Author’s Bio: Pamela Jablonski

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Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals decides the Second Amendment is just a suggestion – Canada Free Press

Posted: at 12:54 pm

Liberal politicians who run states and cities have certain habits they come back to again and again. One is the passage of gun bans they know perfectly well are clear violations of the Second Amendment. Why do the do this? Partly because ideologically they cant help themselves. But also: They hope to create test cases in the courts that, they hope, will produce favorable rulings and thus establish case law that renders the entire Second Amendment null and void.

Toward that end, the State of Maryland scored a very big victory today, as the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an assault weapons ban that cant possibly be defended as constitutional. So why did it survive? Because there are many in the federal judiciary who share the goal of repealing the Second Amendment, and hope to be the judges assigned to these test cases. The Fourth Circuit really outdid itself with this one.

How bad was the ruling? Take it away, David French:

How can it reach such a conclusion? Remember the formula: contempt, willful ignorance, and fear.

First, lets look at the courts breathtaking contempt for individual rights. Rather than read the Supreme Courts controlling opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller according to its plain language, it deliberately distorts Justice Antonin Scalias majority opinion. In Heller, Scalia clearly stated that the sorts of weapons the Second Amendment protects are those that are in common use at the time, with exceptions that apply to those weapons that are dangerous and unusual.

Why the addition of and unusual? Because every single working gun ever made is dangerous. To illustrate his point, Scalia then provides examples of specific types of dangerous and unusual guns M-16 rifles and the like. Heres a news flash: The M-16 isnt the same as a civilian assault weapon like the AR-15. The M-16 variants in use in the United States military are capable of being fired in both semi-automatic and fully automatic (three-round burst) modes. If you think that the M-16 and AR-15 are alike, then walk to your local gun store and try to buy an M-16.

Go ahead. Ill wait.

Are you back yet? Do you have an M-16? No? Thats because its an entirely different category of weapon, governed by different federal statutes. The Fourth Circuit, however, deliberately conflated semi-automatic weapons and automatic weapons. And it went to absurd lengths to do so.

There is much more to Frenchs excellent analysis than I can fairly excerpt here, so please click through and read the whole thing.

Its very instructive to see that the Fourth Circuit so badly mangled Scalias argument in Heller to reach the conclusion it did. It speaks to a group of judges looking for a legal rationale for a ruling they were already bound and determined to issue, rather than following the law wherever it leads you, which is what judges are supposed to do.

Heres whats ironic, though, about the dreck that is this ruling and Frenchs solid analysis of what makes it so bad. Having lost the presidency, Congress, and the vast majority of governorships and state legislatures, the only thing the left still has to thwart conservative policy initiatives is the prospect of help from liberal judges. In this case, they upheld an unconstitutional law passed by a Democrat governor and legislature in a blue state. But elsewhere, as in Texas today, judges are striking down duly passed laws that by any reasonable standard pass constitutional muster.

The Supreme Court may yet save the Second Amendment, and maybe a judge that understands the separation of powers will restore the right of Texas lawmakers to decide who gets taxpayer money. But the reason this is so ironic is that David French was one of the leading voices arguing during the presidential campaign that the Supreme Court was not sufficient reason to support Donald Trump in the general election over Hillary Clinton.

I think French is a terrific writer and thinker on all kinds of issues, but he was #NeverTrump to the core and believed a Trump presidency would be so injurious to the conservative movement that even the prospect of a liberal court majority for the next generation wasnt enough reason to back Trump.

I wonder how happy French is today that Trump was elected, and that Neil Gorsuch stands a very good chance of being the deciding vote in a ruling that overturns the Fourth Circuit and restores the Second Amendment. The federal judiciary is out of control, and that is a much bigger problem that Donald Trumps communication style or anything else you dont like about him.

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Ramsey hires legal defense against 2nd Amendment challengers – NorthJersey.com

Posted: at 12:54 pm

Residents on Wednesday night show support for the Borough Council.(Photo: Tom Nobile/NorthJersey.com)

RAMSEY The Borough Council approved an outside legal defense Wednesday night as it prepares for litigation against an ordinance that would block a 60,620-square-foot gun range from coming to town.

Troutman Sanders, an international law firm based in New York, will defend the borough on a pro bono basis, said Mayor Deirdre Dillon.

On March 8, the council will vote to amend a 1961 ordinance that prohibits the firing of any pistol, shotgun, rifle or other type of firearms anywhere in the borough. The ordinance currently contains an exemption for gun ranges, but the council plans to remove that loophole.

Local officials put forth the ordinance change as a matter of public health and safety, justweeks after a Pennsylvania developer proposed the range to the Planning Board last month.

Multiple parties have pledged to sue if the ordinance is adopted. Among them is the New Jersey Second Amendment Society, an advocacy group for gun owners. President Alexander Roubian said his organization is ready to partner with the Second Amendment Foundation, a national nonprofit, on filing a complaint in federal court.

James Jaworski, an attorney for the range, also plans to protect his clients constitutional rights if necessary.

Troutman Sanders brings experience arguing before the appellate division and Supreme Court, according to Dillon.This is a constitutional law issue, she said.

Roubian said his attorneys are eager to take the case in light of the latest court decisions in Chicago. In years past, and most recently in January, the appellate court ruled against the city for trying to ban and limit gun ranges by zoning.

On a separate track, resident Chance Parker has created a legal fund to challenge the application at the Planning Board level. To date, it has raised $4,500 of its $25,000 goal. The money would help hire an independent planner, engineer and environmental consultant to review the application.

Were trying to provide an effective third-party opinion, he said.

The full-service firing range would have 67 firing stalls, a space for retail sales, gun rentals and a restaurant. Members would have access to locker and bath facilities, and a country-club-style room with a fireplace, billiards and gaming.

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