Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Supreme Court to hear DC gun case

This was one we were waiting for, and we knew the high court would grant cert on it. It's simply too important a case to ignore for them. But this may be a powder keg of a case (no pun intended) when the decision is rendered next year:

The Supreme Court said Tuesday it will decide whether the District of Columbia can ban handguns, a case that could produce the most in-depth examination of the constitutional right to "keep and bear arms" in nearly 70 years.

The justices' decision to hear the case could make the divisive debate over guns an issue in the 2008 presidential and congressional elections.

The government of Washington, D.C., is asking the court to uphold its 31-year ban on handgun ownership in the face of a federal appeals court ruling that struck down the ban as incompatible with the Second Amendment. Tuesday's announcement was widely expected, especially after both the District and the man who challenged the handgun ban asked for the high court review.

Eugene Volokh has related thoughts here regarding the interpretation of the Second Amendment. Allah isn't holding his breath and thinks the high court is going to screw this one up. Of course, he's not talking about the entire court, but rather the port side wing of it, with Justice Kennedy being the swing vote again; I'm guessing that he thinks Justice Kennedy will swing the wrong way. Orin Kerr thinks that Justice Kennedy will rule narrowly, and see an individual right.

There is a lot at contention in this case, and the court has it's hand full, but it's a necessity at this time in our nation's history. This has to be ruled upon, and the gun-grabbers/pro-gun control people have to suck it up and deal with whatever that decision is.

I know a lot of people are really worried about the pending decision (which won't be handed down until June or July of next year; just in time to make it a serious campaign issue), and more than a couple of our friends have predicted that the high court is going to strike down the Second Amendment. That's asinine. (We said they're our friends, not legal scholars.) We know that the Supreme Court has chosen to ignore the Tenth Amendment on many occasions, and they totally screwed up the Kelo decision, but there is no way in Hell that they're going to toss the Second Amendment under the bus.

Here's our prediction: The high court will rule that the Second Amendment's "right to bear arms" is an individual right, and they'll make a federalist solution to the problem which gives the States the right to regulate firearms. Many Second Amendment advocates need to remember that the Bill of Rights applies to the federal government. Congress can't infringe on gun ownership rights just as much as they can't legally curtail First Amendment rights. But the States can. They already do. A concealed carry permit can't be transferred from state-to-state, especially given the fact that more than a few states don't have CCW laws on the books. (There are only 39 states which allow concealed-carry.)

If the court rules on the federalist side of the issue, it's a virtual punt. It means they recognize the right is there -- be it collective or individual -- but they're not going to tell one state (or in this case, one district) that they can't own firearms, which is at the heart of the case before them.

Publius II


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