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courtesy In a ruling issued today, a Federal judge has declared that the longstanding ban on gun dealers selling handguns to residents in different states is not only unconstitutional under the Second Amendment, but also violates other fair trade provisions of the United States Constitution. The full decision is available here, but from what I can tell this looks to be a major win for the Citizen’s Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. Louis Bonham, one of TTAG’s consulting lawyers, wrote the following analysis of the ruling:

The suit was brought by a Texas gun dealer, two District of Columbia residents, and the Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. In what appears to have been a test case, the DC residents wished to purchase a handgun from the Texas dealer, but federal law prohibited them from doing so without having the Texas dealer ship the gun to DC’s only FFL, who would have charged them a $125 transfer fee.

They then filed suit in federal court in the Northern District of Texas, arguing that the federal prohibition on direct sales of handguns by FFL’s to out of state residents unconstitutionally violated their rights under the Second Amendment and the Due Process clause of the Fifth Amendment.

After finding that the plaintiffs had standing to challenge the federal law, the court found that the residency restrictions of federal law were not “longstanding” (as opposed, e.g., to restrictions on the age of firearms purchasers that had been around for all of US history), but instead were of relatively recent origin.

The court thus reasoned that because such residency restrictions affected the right to keep and bear arms as understood at the time the Second Amendment was ratified, the federal residency restrictions burdened conduct that fell within the scope of the Second Amendment.

The Court thus then determined that because the federal law imposed a burden on a constitutional right, and that the burden was not de minimis, the law must be evaluated under a standard of strict scrutiny. Under this standard, the government must show that it had a compelling interest and that the law was “narrowly tailored” – that is, the law was the least restrictive means of addressing the compelling interest.

The Court accepted the government’s argument that its interest in preventing handgun crime was compelling. However, it found that the requirement that all sales of handguns to out-of-state residents must go through another FFL (i.e., an FFL in the purchaser’s state of residence) was not narrowly tailored.

The Court noted that FFL’s could sell long guns to out of state residents without involving a second FFL, and that there was no evidence that the involvement of a second FFL in handgun purchases served any particular purpose. The Court also noted FFL’s are required to run a NICS check on all handgun purchasers, that federal law prohibited FFL’s from selling to persons not authorized to purchase handguns under their state or local law, and that nothing prevented states from prosecuting out-of-state FFL’s who illegally sold handguns to their residents.

In short, there was nothing achieved by having a second FFL involved that could not also be achieved by simply applying the same laws that apply to interstate sales of long guns.

As a fallback, the Court also analyzed the federal law under intermediate scrutiny, i.e., that the law be “reasonably adapted” to its public safety objectives. The Court found that the federal law failed this test as well, finding that the requirement of having a second FFL involved in the transaction was not substantially related to the government’s stated goals.

The Court also found that the law violated the Due Process clause of the Fifth Amendment, insofar as it discriminated against non-residents, and failed the strict scrutiny test for this as well.

This case will almost certainly be appealed to the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, which has historically been friendly to such Second Amendment challenges, and I strongly suspect it may ultimately be destined for review by the Supreme Court.

Plaintiffs are represented by attorney Alan Gura, who has successfully handled many other recent Second Amendment challenges.

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    • Say it with me :

      “The People of California Enact As Follows: CA residents may not recieve out of state handguns regardless of what the Federal Bench or USC says. People who do so anyways face local charges.”

        • I’m pretty sure you need to re-take your High School Civics class.

          Federal Law does not “trump” State law. It’s not a hierarchy of laws in that sense. They are different jurisdictions, each with their own defined statutes and court system.

          It gets very interesting when they come into direct conflict.

        • James that is the same mythology that has allow activist courts (all) to seize under the rubric of “judicial review” the power to legislate from the bench.

        • JR in NC, you sir might need to freshen up some yourself. This ban was struck down because it violated our constitutional rights, and if the silly CA safe gun list is found to violate the same rights, it too will be struck down. States have a lot of power, but they can’t defy the Constitution.

        • The ruling analysis does specifically mention that the transfer must be legal under state and local laws.

          From what I gather, the approved list restriction is only on retail sales of new guns, so I could move to CA (<shudders at the thought>) and take my handguns that are not on the list, as long as I leave my full capacity magazines at the Oregon border and register the guns with the state.

          Given that, I would think this ruling would allow Californians to drive to Yuma or Las Vegas, buy a gun that’s not on the list, and legally return to California with it (sans those full capacity magazines), and register it.

          Expect to see lots of new gun stores open up on I-8 and I-10, just east of the Colorado River.

        • “JR in NC, you sir might need to freshen up some yourself. This ban was struck down because it violated our constitutional rights, and if the silly CA safe gun list is found to violate the same rights, it too will be struck down. States have a lot of power, but they can’t defy the Constitution.”

          You misunderstood my comment.

          The point I was referring too was “federal laws trump state laws…always.” That simply is not true.

          I was not talking about unconstitutional laws (of either variety) in general or this particular law/ruling.

        • Actually JR, federal law does “trump” state law. They are different jurisdictions, but each state when they joined, part of the agreement was essentially what people call a “supremacy clause”. States like Wyoming that are enacting these laws to block federal gun legislation are writing laws that won’t ever be legal. Federal writes the supreme law and states write lower laws to govern their states better. Those laws can not overwrite or negate any federal law though. If this ruling is upheld, that california law can be overturned. Don’t like it? Secede and rejoin under a new agreement.

        • You, too, are missing my point.

          Something can be “illegal” at the federal level and “legal” at the state level (Colorado marijuana laws?)…or vice versa. Kidnapping, for example, does not become a federal crime unless a state line is crossed, and a federal prosecution in such a case has nothing whatsoever to do with a State’s prosecution of violation of it’s kidnapping law.

          Also, see ALL the individual state CC laws for additional examples.

          You stated my point when you said they are different jurisdictions. They are different. It is not strictly correct to say “fed always trumps state.”

        • When they say that “federal law trumps state law”, what this means is that if something is illegal on the federal level, the states cannot override that and make it legal. But the reverse is not true: if something is legal on the federal level because there’s no law against it, the states can still make it illegal within their jurisdiction.

          Note that this is only insofar as federal and state laws are concerned. Constitutionality of either adds a whole different dimension. If this case goes all the way up and is still upheld, and the rationale for it is that it violates the Second, then it would invalidate similar laws in all states since the Second is incorporated against the states. However, whether the California law that you’ve quoted is “similar” is questionable.

        • Federal law only trumps state law in areas where it applies: It must be a legitimate duty of that branch assigned by then US Constitution, and done in a constitutional manner.

          The states as well as the feds are bound by it. But the federal government is limited in the scope where it was given authority. If you will please also notice that in article 5 those who serve within the state governments as well as those who serve within the general (federal) government are bound by the US Constitution when it applies, such as the Bill of Rights, all are oath bound to respect and NOT cross those limitations put upon those who serve within our governments. Breaking the Oath is at least one felony (depending on where located), and perjury.

          Patrick Henry: “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government – lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”

          Thomas Jefferson: “The government created by this compact (the Constitution) was not made the exclusive or final judge of the extent of the powers delegated to itself; since that would have made its discretion, and not the Constitution, the measure of its powers; but that, as in all other cases of compact among powers having no common judge, each party (the people of each state) has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress.”

          James Madison, Federalist 46: “The Foederal and State Governments are in fact but different agents and trustees of the people, instituted with different powers, and designated for different purposes… They must be told that the ultimate authority, wherever the derivative may be found, resides in the people alone; and that it will not depend merely on the comparative ambition or address of the different governments, whether either, or which of them, will be able to enlarge its sphere of jurisdiction at the expence of the other. Truth no less than decency requires, that the event in every case, should be supposed to depend on the sentiments and sanction of their common constituents.”

          US Constitution, Article VI: “… This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

          The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.”

        • JR, marijuana is still illegal even in states that think they have legalized it. As long as it remains on the federal controlled substance list, federal agents can raid marijuana fields and dispensaries in those states whenever they want to and they already have done many times. Federal law IS supreme, regardless of what the state legislators and people like you think.

          Hannibal, we get what he is saying but what he is saying is WRONG. THAT is basic civics. States cannot make something legal that the federal government has declared to be illegal. The Supremacy Clause of the Constitution prevents that from happening.

        • Federal law is only supreme when it’s constitutional. Can you cite the constitutional basis for federal regulation of substances that are both produced and consumed within the same state? While you’re at it, you might also want to explain why Prohibition required a constitutional amendment, but none was enacted (or even so much as proposed) for the “war on drugs”.

      • Well I assume just like all the gay marriage decrees from judges in the morning that result in marriages by lunchtime I assume that gun dealers can start implementing the new rules RIGHT NOW! Right?

        Strange how the gubmint workers can instantly implement leftist decrees but any kind of conservative judicial decision has to wait for 2 dozen challenges to be exhausted.

      • It is the Federal law that got struck down, not a state law. The entire authority the ATF has is based on the interstate commerce clause.

      • The Republic of CA is under the control of a group of liberal legislators who are there to knock down or at least water down the US Constitution second amendment because they feel they are above the law of the land.
        The residents should disobey the law where ever and when ever they get a chance. Then and only then can we jam those kinds of laws down their pink throats.

      • My reading of the opinion would lead me to conclude that you’d still be restricted by the state laws on the type of gun being transferred, but if the type is allowed, then you no longer need an FFL in the state to transfer it. You still need an FFL if you’re a dealer, but you don’t need to have an FFL in the state or DC where the buyer/transferee lives.

      • Simple.

        If you buy a gun in VA that is kosher in MD, you’re golden. If you buy a gun in VA that is prohibited in MD, then you’re going to jail. This case is not gonna save anyone from the lunacy that reigns in places like MD, CA, HI, etc.

        It’s just like marijuana. If you buy weed in CO (to use in CO), you’re safe. If you buy weed in CO, the moment you set foot in KS with that bag of weed, you’re going to jail.

    • My understanding of the safe roster is it only applies to guns sold at a dealer in CA. As long as I register the handgun and remove any “Hi cap” mags when I bring it back to the state I can get an off roster handgun. Even in CA if I want an off roster handgun I can buy one from an individual. We have to go thru a dealer to complete the transaction. A lot of gun shops do this under “consignment sales”. It’s how I got my Mak and s&w 10-8

      • California residents cannot buy firearms in other states. This is due to the “cool off” period, and the confusing array of laws of prohibited/restricted weapons.

        • Wrong. California residents can buy long guns in other states. California residents–in fact the resident of any particular state–cannot purchase a handgun in any other state because of the federal law against the interstate sales of handguns. Handguns, but for this decision, can only be purchased in one’s own state of residence. You are, however, allowed to make a deal for the sale of the handgun with an out of state seller, but it has to be shipped to your in-state FFL and is required to comply with any state law restrictions, and where you may legally take possession. Alternately (I think), the seller can come to your state of residence and engage in a face to face transaction that complies with state law. (In California, for example, the transaction has to be handled through an FFL, as do all firearms transfers.) You cannot legally take possession of a handgun in a state in which you do not reside–and that includes intrafamilial transfers.

        • The waiting period was ruled unconstitutional a few months ago for people who already lawfully own guns. The Calif DOJ engineered some sort of delay in implanting the removal of the 10-day wait, however.

          If it works out, prior owners of registered firearms will not have to wait any longer than it takes for the background check to clear.

      • The gun has to be brought legally into the state (e.g. someone moved there with it) or it was purchased under some exemption (LEO, former single shot exemption, pre-roster firearms), and it is purchased in a face to face transaction with another state resident. Interstate sales of non-roster firearms are prohibited.

        • The California purchase laws by Federal law can only apply to guns bought in Cali. Since a Cali resident could previously only buy from a Cali FFL, there was a nice enforcement choke point. The roster only applies to guns bought in Cali. They have no jurisdiction for someone buying in Texas. Case in point, military members (or other poor souls from greener pastures passing through) are not required to register their guns in Cali and can keep them as long as they don’t violate Cali’s possession laws regarding guns (AWB, loaded in car, mag limits, NFA, etc.)

          With this a Cali resident no longer has to buy from the lame Cali handgun roster to be legal. The problem of course happens after that due to registration in slave states like these. Its gonna get weird, but there should be some good test cases coming from it to finally kill the roster.

        • They don’t have jurisdiction over the purchase when it happens, but they most certainly have jurisdiction over the person itself as soon as they cross the border back into CA. If the law bans mere possession, it would apply. As someone has already noted, this is exactly the same as with weed – you can go to a state where it’s legal and buy it there, and your home state can’t have any say in this matter, but the moment you move back into your state with that weed, they have jurisdiction and you have committed a crime.’

          Another example that has a very long history is use taxes. Again, when you buy something out of state, your state cannot tax that transaction because it is not in their jurisdiction. But once you come with the item into the state (or have it shipped to you etc), they can nab you with a tax on possession (hence why it’s called a “use tax”, even though it’s effectively a roundabout way to collect the sales tax on an out-of-state transaction).

    • No.

      California just had a law go in effect this year which requires CA residents who buy guns in another state to process them through a CA FFL if they bring them here, and those importations are NOT exempt from the roster. Until now the only application of the law has been with dual residents, who before Jan 2015 could buy a handgun in their other state of residency and then bring it here.

      So no laws need to be changed. And you still cannot buy a rifle in another state either.

    • Lots of good info and opinion at Calguns on Silvester v Harris- here:
      First read FAQs sticky, then the longer discussion.

      Bottomline, yes, Plaintiffs won decision, implementation stayed, on request of CA AG for more time to program computers, blah blah blah, and drag her heels on more legal manuevering.

      Docs and updates of the legal sort hosted here:

    • If the stupid liberals are not attacking one part of the Constitution they are attacking another. Screw these communist pigs.

      • True freedom is no restrictions. I think felons should be able to own guns. If they are such bad people then they don’t belong in public. I know many felons who did stupid stuff when they were young and now cannot leave the country, cannot vote, and cannot own guns.

        • I think there ought to be periods of parole and probation between release from prison and a full restoration of rights, but that restoration should be the norm for those who reform and stay out of trouble, instead of the exception.

        • Absolutely. If an individual is too violent to be trusted with a basic right as self-defense, particularly with a firearm then they are too violent to be reintroduced into society. Whatever happened to serving your debt to society? Once you’re done, you’ve paid your dues and it’s time for everyone to move on.

        • Once you’re done, you’ve paid your dues and it’s time for everyone to move on.

          And what about the people who have been beaten, robbed or raped? Do they move on too? Do they get any restitution from the felon who harmed them?

          The whole idea of “paying their debt to society” is as statist as it gets. Felons owe a debt to the people they harmed, not “society”, which really means “the state.” Until they repay that debt, felons deserve absolutely nothing.

        • I’m for felons having all rights restored after parole and all of your time served, because a person should either have paid their dues, or not been let out. Another part of the problem is that after being let out, they must forever be branded a felon, and it removes job prospects. This increases the likelihood of recidivism.

        • The problem with that is that prisons are big business now. A large percentage of prisons are privately owned enterprises, and they make decisions based on that basis. They get so much money per inmate, per year, and they would rather keep a peaceful hippie who got busted with marijuana, and parole the murderers and rapists when they are short on beds. Particularly prisons where the inmates participate in activities (think making license plates) that generate even more money for the prisons.

          You can say that it isn’t up to the prisons who they release, but it doesn’t necessarily matter if the parole board is not on the payroll, when the prison officials are the ones who keep track of records on their behavior while incarcerated.

          I can agree that some felons are unfairly barred from ever owning firearms again…but in the case of rapists, armed robbers etc….no effing way….I would never vote for them to own firearms again.

        • Ralph, getting restitution for damages is totally possible, but that is in the realm of civil law. The very status of “felon” and the associated imprisonment and other restrictions are for the sake of behavioral correction and/or deterrence, not restitution.

        • Most importantly, stripping felons of arbitrary set of their civil rights is basically a backdoor around the whole notion of Constitutional protections. Remember that felonies are felonies simply because the law says so, and it only takes the simple majority in the legislature to pass a new law.

          Once they pass a law and entrap you into breaking it (and let’s face it, with so many laws on the books these days criminalizing petty and harmless things, it’s trivial), you’re a felon now, and suddenly you can’t vote, so you can’t even try to fix the law! Worse yet, if they can strip your 2A rights, surely they can also strip 4A, 1A etc… so now you can be arbitrarily searched and detained, can’t speak freely, don’t have freedom of movement (remember those limits on where sex offenders can live?) etc. And all this by a simple majority vote!

          If that doesn’t give you shivers, I think you haven’t properly considered the consequences of taking this logic to its full extreme.

        • “Did you really think we want those laws observed?” said Dr. Ferris. “We want them to be broken. You’d better get it straight that it’s not a bunch of boy scouts you’re up against… We’re after power and we mean it… There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws. Who wants a nation of law-abiding citizens? What’s there in that for anyone? But just pass the kind of laws that can neither be observed nor enforced or objectively interpreted – and you create a nation of law-breakers – and then you cash in on guilt. Now that’s the system, Mr. Reardon, that’s the game, and once you understand it, you’ll be much easier to deal with.”
          –Ayn Rand, ‘Atlas Shrugged’

      • “That noise you heard was their heads exploding – the sound of freedom!”

        “Every time a progressive statists head pops, an angel gets its wings.”

        Robert W

      • Holder and the Justice Department were already the losers in this case.

        Unless SCOTUS accepts and overturns it, Holder/Justice is done.

    • Not long, probably. That always gets me. If different federal courts can come to opposite conclusions regarding the same law, and the SCOTUS can keep refusing to settle the matter, then there might as well not be any laws.

      Federal judges to the nation: “There is no justice. There’s just us.”

      • I’ve never understood the requirement that criminal verdicts be established unanimously (by juries), but appeals court judges can split votes and majority wins. I would think appeals for the constitutionality of laws are as much more important than individual case verdicts as criminal cases are more important than civil cases.

        In my dictator-for-a-day world, split appeals court constitutionality rulings would void the law at stake in its entirety, on the principle that anything so unclear is unfit to be law; if higly educated judges can disagree about the meaning or interpretation of a law, how can mere uneducated citizens possibly understand it enough to obey it? The legislature would have to pass a revised version.

        • “In my dictator-for-a-day world, split appeals court constitutionality rulings would void the law at stake in its entirety.”

          That would be a huge improvement, actually. Much like the Robert Heinlein (at least that’s where I encountered them) ideas that:

          1) no law should be passed without a 2/3 majority, on the grounds that if you can’t get that level of agreement on a law it probably shouldn’t be imposed on free citizens

          2) there should be another legislative body with the sole purpose of repealing laws, with a 1/3 minority required to repeal, with a similar rationale.

        • “In my dictator-for-a-day world, split appeals court constitutionality rulings would void the law at stake in its entirety, on the principle that anything so unclear is unfit to be law …”

          Wow, I really like that. That might just be a compelling new U.S. Constitutional amendment.

        • An alternative suggestion is that you can pass laws with a simple majority, but they have a very short automatic sunset period (e.g., a year for 50%+1, and then add 1 year for every 3% of the vote on top of that). Basically, the more votes for a law, the longer it remains in force, but no law, not even the most popular, doesn’t have a sunset date.

          This way, really stupid things would have to be voted in again and again, and after the first couple votes their supporters would have to explain why they don’t really work, and encounter more resistance every time until they just lose the vote. And furthermore, it would place a time-based constraint on the sheer amount of such laws that can be in force at any given time (basically, no more than can be voted on in a given time period). OTOH laws that are universally accepted would stay on the books for decades, with an occasional token vote to extend them.

          It would also encourage more compromise and consensus seeking, since even if you have the majority needed to pass the law, you still need extra votes to secure it for a longer period of time.

    • I sure am surprised about this too. Makes me feel a little weak in the knees from the shock of it. Next thing you know, they will be kicking liars off the evening news, forcing politicians to tell the truth, and letting people freely use ALL the rights guaranteed by our constitution.

  1. Cool! Who wants to be my buddy I can sell? 😀

    “for now it would seem that selling a handgun or buddy in another state”

    Seriously though, that’s cool news.

    • If it sticks, it will be very good news for those of us that live in a border city adjacent to another state. One of my favorite handgun sellers is on the “wrong” side of the river, and I’m getting tired of paying exorbitant shipping and transfer fees for buying from a place that is little more than an hour’s drive away.

    • How so? Can an in-state dealer currently send a non-dealer a handgun through the mail? If not, then I don’t see how this ruling changes things.

      It just means that I could drive to another state and buy a handgun in person from a dealer, the same way I can now do that with a shotgun or rifle. The sale would still be subject to all the applicable laws of the dealer’s state and my state, but I would be able to complete the transaction in person and then bring the gun home with me.

      • You got it. All dealer sales require a background check. It is only in (some) states that background checks are not required for private sales. But it does mean that their might be more business at the local gun show. and it also means that you can go to a state with instant background checks, buy a firearm from a dealer, and walk out the door, unlike California and other states with waiting periods.

    • I don’t think that would fly, as NICS must be done in person; so an Internet sale would still have to go through the Seller’s state’s FFL to the Buyer’s state’s FFL…then to the Buyer after the Buyer passes the NICS check.

      Of course, under this decision, one could Buy via the Internet, then go there and pick up their purchase….

    • I’ve got their “untermenchen” right here… [pats suchka] Looks like I need to go “sell” my mom a new home defense gun while the selling’s good.

  2. Three years ago,I contacted my Congressman for the purpose of repealing that odious section of the 1968 GCA. It would have permitted in person delivery same day of any firearm to out of state residents , provided the usual 4473 was completed on site as usual.

    You might wonder why it never saw the light of day. The answer-some kids got shot in Conneticutt a month after I started the dialogue.

    Good to see the Federal Bench has taken up the mantle. Now for the appeal………(sigh)

        • Question (may be a dumb one…): Are private sales between non-business entities considered “commerce” under modern interpretations of Interstate Commerce?

        • Thomas Jefferson: “I consider the foundation of the Constitution as laid on this ground: That “all powers not delegated to the United States, by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States or to the people. To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specially drawn around the powers of Congress, is to take possession of a boundless field of power, no longer susceptible of any definition.”

          Thomas Jefferson: “The government created by this compact (the Constitution) was NOT made the exclusive or final judge of the extent of the powers delegated to itself; since that would have made its discretion, and not the Constitution, the measure of its powers; but that, as in all other cases of compact among powers having no common judge, each party (the people of each state) has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress.” (caps mine)

          Thomas Jefferson: “Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but only those specifically enumerated.”

          James Madison: “With respect to the words “general welfare,” I have always regarded them as qualified by the detail of powers connected with them. To take them in a literal and unlimited sense would be a metamorphosis of the Constitution into a character which there is a host of proofs was not contemplated by its creators.”

          James Madison, Federalist 14: “In the first place, it is to be remembered, that the general government is not to be charged with the whole power of making and administering laws. Its jurisdiction is limited to certain enumerated objects, which concern all the members of the republic, but which are not to be attained by the separate provisions of any”.

          James Madison, Federalist 45: “The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and FOREIGN commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several states will extend to all the objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement and prosperity of the State.” (caps are mine)

          James Madison, the Father of the US Constitution, in a letter written to a Virginia senator, Joseph Cabell, Madison made his views unambiguous: the interstate and foreign commerce clauses were not intended, nor construed, to vest in Congress equivalent powers when regulating domestic and foreign commerce: “I always foresaw difficulties might be started in relation to the interstate commerce power. Being in the same terms with the power over foreign commerce, the same extent, if taken literally, would belong to it. Yet it is very certain it grew out of the abuse of the power of the importing states in taxing the non-importing, and was intended as a negative and preventative provision against injustice amongst the states themselves, rather than as a power to be used for the positive purposes of the General Government, in which alone, however, the remedial power could be lodged. And it will be safer to leave the power with this key to it, than to extend it all the qualities and incidental means belonging to the power over foreign commerce.”

          Daniel Webster: “Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters.”

          Just because those who are serving are saying that they have those powers does NOT make it so. But unless the people themselves understand exactly what those who serve within our governments are allowed to do, what they are forbidden to do, and what they can do ONLY under specific circumstances and in a specified way, those who serve will get away with murder, First Degree Murder (assassination powers) to be exact.

    • IANAL, but as I understand it, a federal district judge’s ruling has the effect of law of the land. As long as it is not contradictory of another federal district (of the same level) ruling, it has the effect of it becoming a law. But as soon as an appeal is filed at the next level, generally, the carrying out of that law is suspended until the higher court rules. I could be wrong. (And you can bet your bottom dollar that this will be appealed.)

      • “IANAL, but as I understand it, a federal district judge’s ruling has the effect of law of the land.”

        IANAL either, but will weigh in with my understanding.

        A district judge’s ruling does not necessarily become “law of the land” but merely represents precedent that other judges may (should?) consider in THEIR rulings.

        The difference might seem subtle or academic, but there is no direct enforcement of “judge’s rulings” at any level, so such rulings are not themselves “laws.”

        That’s not to say that judge’s ruling won’t have an influence on enforcement practices, but those would only still apply within the scope of the case the judge was hearing and ruling on.

        That’s my understanding, but welcome correction by the lawyers.

        • Not much to correct. The judge’s ruling is not the law of the land. Other judges are free to differ.

          It’s the same at the Circuit (Federal appellate) level when there are conflicts between Circuits. Each Circuit can have it’s own interpretation until and unless SCOTUS decides otherwise.

    • I think Mr. Bonham may have missed one of the more important aspects of this case: “Accordingly, the
      Court DECLARES that 18 U.S.C. §922(a)(3), 18 U.S.C. § 922(b)(3), and 27 C.F.R. §478.99(a) are UNCONSTITUTIONAL, and Defendants are ENJOINED from enforcing these provisions.” Note there are no geographical or jurisdictional limitations on this declaration or injunction. It would not surprise me if Defendants next move is to seek to stay the declaration and injunction pending appeal (which would allow them to continue to enforce the law until the appeals process is exhausted).

        • whether its typical or atypical–it directly answers the questions posed above as to the geographic reach of the order. the answer is: the grant of summary judgment applies only in this case, the holding is precedent only in the ND Tex and merely persuasive everywhere else, and the declaration and injunction are geographically unlimited.

        • Wasn’t the defendant the US? If so, the prohibition of interstate sales of handguns by FFL’s is enjoined nationwide.

  3. This was recently a question I had to investigate. I was on travel to another state. Apparently federal law prohibits the transfer of a handgun to a person from an FFL when that person is not in his own state. It doesn’t, as so many assume, prevent the sale, just the transfer. You can go to any state (local laws permitting) and buy a handgun. You just can’t get your hands on it until it’s transferred to an FFL in YOUR state and you the follow local customs. Where that leads next is the individual transfer of handguns without an FFL. But the federal law implies that the seller and buyer are NOT IN the same state and that the handgun must somehow travel between states. What seems silent in the code is the scenario where the buyer and seller are from different states, but are actually in the same state at the time of transfer. So, local customs allowing, is it against federal law for a person of state 1 to sell and transfer a handgun to a person of state 2 while both are in state 1 or state 2 without going through an FFL? Assuming of course that neither is a prohibited person or otherwise prevented from possessing a firearm. Of course…

    • The scenarios you describe are why these laws are so odious and pointless. I can’t begin to opine on the legality of what you describe.

      • Its my understanding that the ruling affects transfer between individuals in different states. FFLs would still have to abide by Federal law when transferring.

        • Correction: It seems this ruling affects FFLs when selling to a resident of another state while they are on-site and in-person.. Federal law regarding transfers would still apply when selling/shipping to purchasers in other states, ie. not in person.

    • “What seems silent in the code is the scenario where the buyer and seller are from different states, but are actually in the same state at the time of transfer.”

      It would seem that this would be handled in the same manner as shotgun and rifles have been for decades.

  4. This is a huge win!

    More importantly, it supports the point of the U.S. Constitutional power assigned to the Federal Government to “regulate interstate commerce”: namely to help it to happen, not stop it from happening!

  5. Where in that brief did you get that private interstate sales no longer require an FFL to do a transfer? Pretty sure this only applies to buying a handgun from an FFL outside of your home state.

    • Even better! That was going to be my question, in fact. If I take my out-of-state bud to my favorite lgs (which I did recently) and he falls in heat with a nice piece (which he did), can he now buy the thing, rather than being refused (as he was)?

      • According to the ruling, yes … as long as your friend can legally purchase and possess the handgun in his home state and your local gun store is within the jurisdiction of that court.

        • What if in said state you require a permit for each pistol you buy, as is the case in NJ? Does that mean that if I’m in Florida and I want to buy a pistol, would I have to have a permit for this purchase (we require a new permit for each new purchase in NJ). Would we also be subject to the same one pistol per 30 day restriction as well?

  6. I’m a bit confused by this… I thought you needed to go through an FFL for a handgun purchase even when in the same state. Or is that only in certain states (I’m in PA if that matters)?

    • Well, no–I could buy a gun from my neighbor without going through an FFL. But the trick is the delivery–I think firearms can only be mailed between FFL dealers. Different issue, right? Or not?

      • Common misconception:
        Q:May a nonlicensee ship a firearm by common or contract carrier? A nonlicensee may ship a firearm by a common or contract carrier to a resident of his or her own State or to a licensee in any State. A common or contract carrier must be used to ship a handgun. In addition, Federal law requires that the carrier be notified that the shipment contains a firearm and prohibits common or contract carriers from requiring or causing any label to be placed on any package indicating that it contains a firearm.
        [18 U.S.C. 922(a)(2)(A), 922(a) (3), 922(a)(5) and 922(e), 27 CFR 478.31 and 478.30]

    • Not federally. In some states, my state of Indiana included, private sales of handguns do not need to go through an ffl. Only if you are buying from a dealer did all the paperwork have to be done.

    • Only in certain states. That’s what the big issue is in Washington state with the recent passage of I-594. Until that passed, one Washington resident could sell to another Washington resident without any background checks or FFL involvement. That has now changed – but many states do not infringe on intrastate sales between qualified residents.

      • “Only in certain states.”

        And PA is one of them. You can legally transfer a long gun without going through a licensed dealer, but not a handgun (that’s State law).

  7. The Court applied Strict Scrutiny in ruling the ban is unconstitutional, but also said that even if they used intermediate scrutiny that the ban would still be unconstitutional. Big win. For now. I’m sure it will be appealed.

    • It was a fairly thorough decision – not only was the statute rejected under both strict and intermediate scrutiny (after determining that strict scrutiny applied), but it was rejected both facially and as applied under both standards. Moreover, the Court went on and rejected it under Equal Protection under the 5th Amdt. Due Process guarantee, since this is fundamental right, and the categories involve residency.

    • An interesting part of the holding was the role of the Brady Law/NICS. Essentially the court found that the challenged law, when enacted, might have actually served a useful purpose, but that much of that function is now served by the Brady Law – since all FFL dealers are required to perform an NICS, going out of state is now a lot less usefull to criminals. Of course, New Yorkers with clean records might try to go Florida to buy guns that they can’t at home, but they would still be in breach of NY law, as would the dealer.

      • I wonder if LEO sign-off on NFA-regulated giggle-guns, silencers, etc. could be thrown out under this reasoning. IE, we don’t need to rely on LEO signature because NICS takes care of making sure the person taking possession isn’t a felon.

        • The BAFTE is actually looking to get rid of the CLEO sign off requirement themselves claiming it is redudant and unnecessary. That probably won’t stop certain states from requiring it though just to be dicks.

  8. Don’t expect this to last. The feds, the atf, and the supreme court does not like being told what they are doing is illegal. Expect an overturn soon. I am also saying that ALL federal laws on firearms are unconstitutional.

  9. Nick Leghorn – I’m not sure how you got to the individual transfer of handguns from this ruling. I see the tangential relationship, but the case was centered around the requirement to only transfer a handgun to an individual from a FFL IN your own state and not be allowed to transfer it from an out of (your) state FFL directly to you. But there are still issues with the mailing of a handgun from an individual to another individual, but those restrictions may be causally related to the ban at hand. Now this was a District Court ruling, so does this apply nationwide? Was an injunction filed by the Justice Department? Is interstate transfer of handguns currently open season like the D.C. carry weekend? Oh so many questions…

    • The co-plaintiff is located in Texas and the defendant was the US ATJ/POS Holder and addresses the 2nd and interstate commerce. So I’d think broadly applies.

      pg 22 of the ruling (footnote 12) Under current law, an FFL is not authorized to transfer any firearm to anyone until the state or federal authority confirms the transfer is legally permitted under state and federal law. See 18 U.S.C. §922(t) is disturbing. So DC “authorities”/thugs ignores/fails to confirm the transfer.

      BS on the FFL, or anyone else, being required/needing to give a damn about the unconstitutional libtard gun law/reg passed by some remote pissant state/city.

  10. “but for now it would seem that selling a handgun to your buddy in another state without going through a background check is perfectly 100% legal for the first time in nearly 40 years.”

    Let’s get our terminology straight. The above description would apply if some legislature had passed or repealed a law. That’s not the case, the existing law has been declared unconstitutional, meaning the action described has been completely 100% legal for the entirety of the last 40 years, as well as the 400 years before that.

  11. So face to face out of state without a check is legal?

    I thought if you bought a gun(even long guns) at a private sale out of state you had to get it checked?

    • No, they specifically point out that one of the reasons it is unconstitutional is because a background check is done by the local FFL, so it is to burdensome to require an FFL from the other state to do additional paperwork.

  12. I wonder how this will impact other aspects of the ’68 NFA, such as mail order sales? Do all transfers have to be face-to-face? If not, then do they have to be between non FFLs only? Questions, questions…

  13. I think the blogger should double fact check before advising its readers it is now OK to sell a handgun via private party across state lines. You are opening up TTAG to one hell of a liability.

    Please look at the ruling carefully. They are using the term HANDGUN. Why not FIREARMS? I believe this ruling is stating that commercial FFLs can now sell handguns to out of state residents; they have been able to do this with rifles forever, but NEVER hand guns.

    Private citizens require an FFL if selling to an out of state resident for a RIFLE or a HANDGUN currently. Why would this ruling ONLY use HANDGUN if it was pertaining to private sales?

    • The biggest limitation here is that it applies in only one federal district (Northern) of Texas. It is not controlling in any of the other 93 districts in the country, but may be considered persuasive.

      Note that it applies to handguns because they are treated differently under this law. Part of the analysis considered this distinction.

    • I am not a lawyer. This is not legal advice. We have provided an update with the corrected information. Federal decisions are complex and hard to understand, but we do our best to parse them.

    • Titan, IANAL so can’t comment on liability to TTAG, but any sentient oxygen breathing creature reading about guns online knows that you can’t expect to get good legal advice from anonymous sources, or non-lawyers.

      Its caveat emptor, reading bits and bytes, as well as buying guns, IMHO.

      But good job pointing out the error, and good job Nick on fast fix and acknowledgement…
      Jeez if this were the NYT we’d have to wait about two years and read some smarmy legal speek
      dribbled out of the orifice of the faux ombudsman/wymin.

    • “They are using the term HANDGUN. Why not FIREARMS?”

      Because the term ‘firearm’ has two different meanings under the Federal Gun Laws (see ‘NFA’ vs. ‘non-NFA’).

      • I smell the NFA’s blood, this language could easily be used on it.

        Just by tweaking a few words you eviscerate the NFA

        The Court thus then determined that because the federal law imposed a burden on a constitutional right, and that the burden was not de minimis, the law must be evaluated under a standard of strict scrutiny. Under this standard, the government must show that it had a compelling interest and that the law was “narrowly tailored” – that is, the law was the least restrictive means of addressing the compelling interest.

        The Court accepted the government’s argument that its interest in preventing firearms crime was compelling. However, it found that the requirement that all sales of certain weapons be subject to a significant tax was not narrowly tailored, nor imposed for the purpose of collecting revenues.

        The Court noted that FFL’s could sell firearms of very similar make, design, function, appearance, and usefulness without the burden of the tax, and that there was evidence that the tax was imposed as a punitive measure to discourage the people from exercising their civil rights. The Court also noted FFL’s are required to run a NICS check on all firearms purchasers, that federal law prohibited FFL’s from selling to persons not authorized to purchase firearms under their state or local law, and that nothing prevented states from prosecuting out-of-state FFL’s who illegally sold handguns to their residents. Therefore, the paperwork submitted to the BATFE served no additional purposes, as the background check was redundant.

  14. Does that mean I can go from NJ to PA, buy a pistol without a NJ Permit to Purchase, and come back to NJ with a perfectly legal gun? I’m guessing not, but that would be sweet.

    • Probably not, because the ruling only applies to the Northern District of Texas. That means that it is not controlling in the other 93 federal court districts in this country. Neither PA nor NJ are in that district, and, indeed, have federal court districts of their own. They aren’t even in the same federal circuit. Think of it as potentially a trend – other courts may pick up the reasoning here when confronted with similar facts.

      Also, the decision points out that the FFL must guarantee that you conform to the laws of both states. This hasn’t changed. In this case, the Court pointed out that the transaction was essentially legal in both states, and it was only the federal law that was preventing the direct sale.

    • Furthermore, you must be able to legally possess the handgun in your home state. If New Jersey is your home state and New Jersey would not allow you to purchase (possess) that handgun in New Jersey, you cannot legally purchase it in Texas.

      • What if the gun is legal in NJ, but I must have a permit to purchase first, issued by my local police chief (requires a form and two personal references)? If I happened to be in that particular Texas district, could I buy that pistol and drive it home to NJ, sans any permits, except for a NICS check?

        In other words, I wouldn’t be prohibited from buying it in NJ, but per NJ law I would have to ask the state for permission in the form of the purchase permit.

        I wouldn’t do this for obvious logistical reasons, but I’m curious whether it’d be legal.

        • Ask yourself this: what would happen to me if I was arrested in NJ right now with a firearm for which I did not have a permit? This ruling does not change NJ law with respect to the ownership or possession of firearms.

        • That’s what I thought. But what about the court case in question? Doesn’t DC have a similar gun purchase laws to NJ? Didn’t the plaintiffs sue to legally circumvent those requirements? I’m confused.

        • I haven’t read the whole court case, but my understanding so far is you would be in trouble for two reasons

          1. The requirement to have a permit to purchase is state law that applies to you

          2. Even if this ruling allowed it, it only applies in the jurisdiction of that court, N. Texas. New Jersey and the Federal government are not enjoined from enforcing the same law in NJ,

        • Mr. Pierogi,

          The ruling in this court case suggests that Washington D.C. simply requires registration — meaning you can apparently purchase a handgun and then register it. In New Jersey it sounds like you must acquire a purchase permit from your local police BEFORE you purchase a handgun. Therefore, you would have to get your purchase permit from your local police BEFORE going to an FFL in Texas to purchase your handgun.

          However, if D.C. requires you to somehow register your handgun before actually taking possession of it and bringing it into D.C., I have no idea what to say.

    • The way I read this as a current FFL is when (if) its final and removes the restrictions on handguns, a handgun sale will be no different than a long gun. Right now here in FL if you walk in and want to buy an AK with a 75 round drum and your home is in NY I can sell you the rifle. As long as you pass the background check you can pay and walk out the door with it. I don’t care that the gun is restricted in your home state, its not my problem. If you want a 22 pistol with a large magazine then I can still sell it to you but your going to have to pick it up in NY where its prohibited and your out of luck as you will not be allowed to have it. If this goes through the handgun will be just like the rifle. It may be illegal in your state but that’s not my concern. So yes when and if this becomes the law nationwide you will be able to go anywhere and buy a handgun no matter the rules in your state.

      • JD,

        I read the ruling. Your description is accurate. There is a caveat however. From what I read in the ruling FFLs still have to make sure their sales comply with the state laws where the person lives. The ruling mentioned specifically that nothing prevents states from prosecuting out-of-state FFLs for selling firearms to that state’s residents in violation of the laws where they live.

        Get a legal opinion from an attorney before selling firearms to out-of-state residents.

        • Its not illegal to *own* a Gen 4 Glock or even a 30 round pre-ban magazine in Cali. You can buy one from a cop or someone who moved in to that god forsaken state through an FFL. I hope this finally destroys the nonsense that is a state saying a product that ejects high velocity metal but doesn’t have their stamp of approval is a public danger.

  15. if anyone wants to cut to the meat of the decision, it looks like starting at the bottom of page 19 it gets to the real point : The requirement for an in-state FFL to process a sale is a relic of times gone by when the NICS didn’t exist..

    very solid reasoning

    • Not sure that I would go that far. But, the Court did find it significant that the law predated the creation of the NICS, and that FFLs must check with it in order to sell firearms (or at least handguns – not sure without rereading the case). This essentially means that the Congressional purpose of the statute is no longer really compelling, since other means are provided for solving their state problem, and the Defendants (i.e. the federal government) had failed to show that the problem remained after the creation of the NICS and the requirement that it be used by FFLs was added. The stated purpose was to prevent people to cross state lines to purchase handguns that they couldn’t legally purchase in their own state, and with the adoption of the NICS plus the requirement that FFLs conform to the state laws of both states, the Defendants had the burden of showing why this was inadequate, and didn’t.

  16. I was hoping that this would strike down laws which criminalize face-to-face private sales of handguns to out-of-state residents. Unfortunately, this only appears to remove the limitation that FFLs can only sell handguns to residents of their state. And only for northern Texas at the moment.

  17. This is a win, but not necessarily a game-changer. That’s okay. Sometimes a wall comes down all at once (“Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall”), and sometimes it has to be taken down one brick at a time.

    • Right: this does not invalidate actual state laws, it merely requires an out of state FFL (say, texas) to comply with the buyers home-state regulations (e.g. handgun roster and proctology exam permit/registration/fingerprinting/background check) etc.

      Good luck with that. Many PA/VA dealers wont sell long guns or ammo to MD residents because they don’t know what’s on the scary racist rifle list (there are no ammo restrictions, but they dont want to deal with it either since places like NJ do have them).

      • “… it merely requires an out of state FFL (say, texas) to comply with the buyers home-state regulations (e.g. handgun roster and proctology exam permit/registration/fingerprinting/background check) etc. …”

        You sir or ma’am win the Intertubez for the week!

    • Yup, wise and patient strategic litigation building on solid precedent is working on the rights reclaiming side too.

      Ralph, to this legal noob, this seems like the best laymans explanation of scrutiny and application, and I wonder if this is unique to this decision, or a standard that is more or less becoming the way it is, at least as far as what SCOTUS wants to see.

      I still dont see an explanation of exactly what public safety means, but I will read the whole thing and try to figure it out. Where that will come in handy is in the 9th Peruta, now awaiting a decision on taking the case en-banc, and appeal of CA AG Harris to intervene, and/or in Richards vs Prieto, and Baker vs Hawaii, where Chief Judge Thomas made the reference to the vague public safety in his first dissent, and Brady has hysterically squawked about it in their amici.

      Someone else said it better- don’t see how a legion of red-eyed, rabid OFWGs having been background checked, good moral caused, shrinked, 16 hour course taken, range practical tested, and poorer by $400 to $1000 depending on your CA county, are going to suddenly disrupt “public safety”.

      In fact, the anecdotal evidence is “no impact” to “bad guys go elsewhere”, and I could be wrong, but surveys and stats are only now proving that same result…

      So what is the “public safety” issue, from giving more law abiding citizens the right to carry?
      Police unions up in arms because, gasp, citizens can now defend themselves?
      Progtard heads exploding causing shrapnel wounds in gated communities?
      Massive loss of FedGov grants and hidden transfers of donations from astroturfed non-profits causing starvation of trust fund kids?

      What say you?

  18. For today, happy dance.

    But… higher ups in the Federal courts are not always so embracing of the Constitution. Many seem to think the Constitution says whatever Congress says it does, without any consideration of the actual words in the constitution.

  19. I’m confused… I consider myself pretty up-to-date on most firearms laws, at the national level and in my own state (FL) as well as a few other states. But I was under the impression that when purchasing any firearm that required shipping (ie, buying via phone/internet, not in person) that it was illegal to have it shipped from the selling FFL directly to my house, that the shipment must be recieved by another local FFL who would transfer it to me in person. If I read this article correctly, the author is stating that this was never the case with long guns, only handguns, and now has been overturned even for handguns? Did i mis-read something? I have bought at least three long-guns off the internet in the past few years, and each time the selling FFL required delivery to a local FFL. Was this just them being extra cautious and covering their ass? I thought my C&R FFL was beneficial because for a limited list of guns, it allowed me to bypass this and have them shipped direct to my door. Was that unnecessary all along for long guns?

  20. This is golden for someone like me who legally lives in one state but works across the line in another. Thankfully these are both non-registration, “shall issue” states, but still gives me flexibility. If upheld, this is a big one. It does beg up the question for people in states with “purchase” restrictions as opposed to “possession” restrictions of whether they could go across the border, make their purchase, and then be legally in possession. Something for the lawyers to figure out.

  21. And just this past Friday, some big dealer in MN called me, asking if I’d be interested in being a transfer agent FFL for their internet business.

    I thought about it for a minute and said “No, thanks.” I had this case in the back of my mind, because I’ve alway thought the law against interstate handgun sales would never survive a serious legal challenge. If the feds allow long guns to be purchased outside your state boundary, then the ban on handgun sales outside your state boundary looks arbitrary.

    This is very good news, and again shows the NRA and other groups how to do it in court. Just as Don Kates told me that the Second Amendment would be held up in court: find (or in this case, create) a case with a squeeky-clean person, and use the tactics of the left: venue-shop your way into the right court first, then start climbing the system. The problem for so much Second Amendment jurisprudence prior to Heller was that the people bringing the cases were usually criminals, and that unfavorably disposes the SCOTUS justices from the get-go.

    • Yes. Incrementalism back in their libtard faces.

      How is a FFL to check what BS local laws that West Hipster, NY may have passed. Apparent the retailer is ensure that he does not sell a highcapacity 9mm to a qualifying W. Hipster resident if W. Hipster has passed a limit on mag capacity.

      Is there an easily accessible reference for all the BS libtard gun laws? The Court says there is.

      • The natural reaction of FFL’s is what you see: Lots of FFL’s saying wholesale “no sales to CA, NY, MA, etc.” We can’t know all the local laws and insanity in those jurisdictions.

      • Sorry, no disrespect to Ed Peruta intended- he learned how to be a “sympathetic plaintiff”, unlike say,
        Leonard Embody…

        Can we find someone to crack the code on Nichols?

    • yup this has been the SAF and Gura formula in CA, as I have read in calguns since back when Ed Peruta was blabbing online, and finally convinced to let his lawyers speak for him. Also, for lawyers in the cases to NOT to discuss their strategy online, except to explain steps and court procedure in laymans terms.

      Best example of attorneys educating of the lay public, imho, would be Chuck Michel and Associates, west coast manager of Peruta, with backing by NRA.

      Kudos to Mr Gura, and to NRA and SAF for working as a team… more please, faster.

  22. Casting outside the obvious Constitutional rights, There has to be a potential for reducing costs of managing firearms by this.

  23. I am not a constitutional scholar. But if this holds up to what I think it is I’m going to save a LOT of $. Let’s wait and see what happens.

  24. Watch for the good old boys in the Senate to allow the crony Mumbles and Sidekick, to slide some “reasonable” progtards into openings on the 5th DC, for comity,
    like Obama packed into on the 2nd, pre-Bulwell and coincidentally Palmer.

    I imagine legal panties are twisted in knots in Austin, but the rest of Texas is celebrating.

  25. The idea behind Federal trumping State law in all areas is absurd. People never heard of the 10th Amendment? The Fed has a gargantuan list that it has already transgressed, namely EDUCATION, healthcare, and other baloney which are all governed under the 9th and 10th Amendments. Do I see a Constitutional Amendment called the ACA? Nope, it’s just some garbage a bunch of idiots in DC think is a legal measure because they voted on it without reading it. Read the name, it’s an act defined for the sole use of increasing taxation for zero purpose as shown by every doctor running scared from it’s feces lined ink scribbles. The guy who wrote it says it’s a piece of garbage, and we want to keep it as an IRS hijinx for what reason? Sorry, despite the civil rights , the USA didn’t get where it was by coddling crybabies in adult costumes. Remember Old Hickory’s epitaph!

  26. I finally read the decision and it is certainly very strong. I hope it stands up to the appeals. Much of the judge’s reasoning is based on Holder’s reliance on pre-1968 statistics that were used to justify the interstate restrictions in the first place. It seems to me that in many places in the verdict the judge left the opening for future cases in other jurisdictions to use “newer” (as in post-1993) “statistics” to help justify the ban supporters’ positions. I expect that Bloomberg has already written a million dollar check to some “foundation” that he controls to employ a bunch of otherwise unemployable law clerks to perform “research proving that all guns used by all gang bangers in NYC originate in VA or GA”. The NRA and others will have to be very careful to choose the next case in a jurisdiction where this type of “logic” cannot be used.

  27. The requirement that the FFL seller must comply with regulations in the non-FFL buyer’s state sets the stage for federal uniformity by way of the interstate commerce clause. This should be interesting.

  28. IANAL, but if some people would actually take two seconds to read (instead of speculating or generalizing)sections A, b, and c of section 922, paying attention to what was actually knocked down by the court, and also what was NOT… Then you will see that this doesn’t really do much of anything. All of that you can now do is buy a handgun face-to-face in another state under the exactly the same type of legal scheme you would need to adhere to for a long gun (ie, you can… pending NICS and provided that you are not violating state laws – both your state’s and the state of purchase …. This does nothing to address state BS, only the federal GCA of 1968 BS that served as the over-arching cherry on top of the manager is of state and fed laws that encompass the title 2 firearm transfer Sundae). (just as in the case of long guns, you would still be subjected to the laws of your own state, this does not strike State laws imposing bands on sales from out-of-state, or on certain types of guns/lists… ) Eg, federal law already does not block in-person purchase of a title 1 gun in a state in which you don’t reside, however, this doesn’t mean that you can legally circumvent (practically may be another matter, none of this stops out-of-state FFLs from their exercising own stupidity) your own state laws (sorry Cali, ny and nj, state laws still exist until they actually get knocked down, you can’t imagine them away). Despite not violating the GCA even before this decision, Cali laws still keept a person from going to Nevada and buying a real ar or ak… With the new decision it is now the same with title 2 guns, you can buy um in-person out of state without violating fed law, but that still doesn’t solve your state restrictions BS. Or another example, even in one of the most gun friendly states, where you can own anything you want, people in Nebraska are legally entitled under the fed law to buy a long gun in any state, always have been, but their state laws say they may only purchase in states which touch NE… So even if the FFL 3 states away is enough of an idiot to do it, it still isn’t legal for them. This new decision also doesn’t mean that you can mail order guns across state lines… Still can’t! The mail order exemption in part C is only applicable to intrastate sales… Read the “in any case not otherwise prohibited by this chapter” part, a (3) was struck by the court, but not a (2), it still applies. Sorry, the mail order thing still only works in-state. All striking a (3) does is make it legal for the FFL to sell to out of state people, a (2) still keeps the, from shipping it out of state to a non-FFL. All striking down b (3) does is let you bring it back into your home state legally under fed law… You could still be in violation of your states laws doing so. What I find interesting is that a (3) didn’t prohibit a non-FFL from receiving a gun out of state, only bringing it home was illegal under a (3)… In theory, if b (3) had been knocked, but not a (3), under fed law you could have bought it out of state legally, and ran across other state lines legally, but not brought it home legally… Even if it was legal for you to do so under your states laws… Bizarre! Now, here is an interesting tidbit… All NFA transfers already go through a more intensive background check than NICS anyway… The exact same arguement could be made even more compellingly for them! Except they don’t need to be, b (3) carried the prohibition on sales to non-residents with an exemption for long guns, nowhere did it specifically prohibit handguns… Therefore, when it got knocked out, it also opened sales to non-residents of not just handguns, but also NFA items and title 1 firearms other than long guns. To yet be addressed is the fact that while FFLs may not be supposed to sell you things illegal in your home state, there would be no cause for such a thing, since a Cali resident could buy it in a legal state, and no one is making them try to bring it home,this must open a Cali resident to alternative legal recourse. There is no reason under this newly opened scheme could you not simply own your guns out of state? The ATF “blue book” would need to have its rules updated to reflect this, putting the onus of not being an idiot and bringing their possessions to places where they aren’t allowed back on the idiot that does it, taking the liability off of FFLs for people’s own stupidity, and freeing people to simply keep their evil fun toys elsewhere. With this logic, even if Cali law still keeps them from bringing them home, Cali residents could legally buy an ar in Nevada and keep it there. Hell, I don’t see why a NJ resident couldn’t buy a crazy assault pistol in Iowa, get a storage unit in Des Moines and take a vacation there to play with um now and again. Sure, it would, be better if Cali or nj or ny took the stick out of their rear ends, but atleast this is seems like a compelling option at the moment if this decision expands beyond northern Texas. It also makes me wonder… I can’t see any reason that it wouldn’t work for NFA items too, fed law already allows secure absentee ownership for people that move to right-infringing states. So why doesn’t someone from Cali go to a FFL/SOT in this fed district in northern Texas and try to buy a MG or suppressor or SBR or some other manner of cali-banned NFA item, they could try to do their paperwork as a trust and avoid needing a Cali sheriff signature, and make the argument that they are picking it up and storing it where it is legal in the same manner as an absentee owner. Food for thought…


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