8/02/2013

Another legal loss on May Issue concealed handguns, when will these cases stop being filed? A lot of bad case law established.

CORRECTION: I had initially written that the Illinois case was an NRA case when it was a joint case with the Second Amendment Foundation.  I should have double checked this.

Unfortunately, it looks like we have lost another case in a May Issue states.  From NewJersey.com:
New Jersey's law requiring residents show a “justifiable need” to get a permit to carry a handgun in public was upheld by a federal appeals court.
A mandate that residents demonstrate an “urgent necessity for self-protection” to get authorization to publicly carry a handgun doesn’t run afoul of U.S. constitutional protections of the right to bear firearms, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals in Philadelphia ruled Wednesday.
“The justifiable need standard is a longstanding regulation that enjoys presumptive constitutionality,” the panel wrote. . . .
Alan Gura, an Alexandria, Va, attorney who represented New Jersey residents challenging the state’s gun- permit law, didn’t immediately return a call after regular business hours Wednesday seeking comment on the ruling. . . . .
However, well meaning, at some point we have to realize that with regard to May Issue states we are creating A LOT of bad case law.  In some cases it appears that this damage is self inflicted as they have refused to rely on empirical evidence (allowing the other side to win by default in balancing tests) and in one other case where some empirical evidence was offered it was very poorly constructed.

A copy of the decision is available here.  Here is a major part of the majority decision.
Simply put, New Jersey’s legislators could not have known that they were potentially burdening protected Second Amendment conduct, and as such we refuse to hold that the fit here is not reasonable merely because New Jersey cannot identify a study or tables of crime statistics upon which it based its predictive judgment.
 The sad thing is there is a lot of evidence that indicates the opposite of this claim is actually true.  As anyone who has read More Guns, Less Crime knows, the revocation rate of permits is even slightly higher when there is discretion on the part of permit authorities than when there isn't and there is no evidence that it is lower.  What New Jersey’s legislators assume to be true is definitely not the case.

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