Newspaper article Roll Call

D.C. Gun Fight Advancing through Courts

Newspaper article Roll Call

D.C. Gun Fight Advancing through Courts

Article excerpt

A federal appeals court has expedited the case of a trio of men who filed suit against the District of Columbia in February after being denied handgun carry licenses, and ruled that D.C. can keep enforcing a key provision of its concealed carry licensing system in the meantime.

Backed by the Second Amendment Foundation, a nonprofit based in the state of Washington, the men challenged the discretionary nature of the D.C.'s gun licensing system, which requires gun owners demonstrate a "good" or "proper" reason to obtain a concealed carry permit.

The lawsuit and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit's Monday ruling to allow it to proceed is one of many attempts by SAF to expand access to guns via the courts. In the legislative branch, GOP-led efforts to wipe out gun control laws in the nation's capital have been rebuked by local officials as congressional bullying, or federal meddling in local affairs.

Eleven months ago, U.S. District Judge Frederick J. Scullin Jr., issued a weekend ruling that was hailed as a victory for the gun rights advocates. Amid the mixed and muddled response to an unexpected order, D.C. police were briefly ordered not to arrest people for carrying pistols and deadly weapons in public.

A federal judge quickly issued a hold on the ruling, at the request of District officials, who began plotting a new course to keep gun control intact. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., vowed to defend a new, narrowly tailored law from congressional interference when it cleared the D.C. Council in September.

In May, Scullin put D.C.'s so-called good reason licensing requirement on hold, agreeing that it violated Second Amendment rights. His ruling was temporarily overturned, and Monday's ruling makes that permanent while the case proceeds.

"This means that D.C. officials will be able to continue protecting the public and enforcing our gun laws while we pursue that appeal," D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine said in a statement. …

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