BREAKING: Federal Judge Upholds CT Gun Ban

Connecticut Dannel Malloy signing gun control legislation courtesy

A federal judge has upheld Connecticut’s recent package of gun legislation: “An Act Concerning Gun Violence Prevention and Children‟s Safety.” In a decision released today, U.S. District Judge Alfred V. Covello found that the Constitution State’s gun legislation was a constitutionally valid means of balancing gun rights and the State’s interest in promoting public safety. Judge Covello wrote “The court concludes that the legislation is constitutional. While the act burdens the plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights, it is substantially related to the important governmental interest of public safety and crime control.” This despite concluding that . . .

“The firearms and magazines at issue are ‘in common use’ within the meaning of Heller and, presumably, used for lawful purposes”, the court found that it was “reasonably certain the prohibitions do not impose a substantial burden”, and thus that intermediate scrutiny was appropriate.

Much like the recent case regarding the NY SAFE Act (and while citing that case in his decision), Covello went ahead without hearing oral arguments, making his decision solely on the briefs submitted by the respective sides. The Connecticut Citizens’ Defense League, a plaintiff in the suit, indicated that “you can be sure we will be filing an appeal forthwith.”

The full text of the decision is available here. (pdf) [h/t: Travis]


  1. avatar ST says:

    Cliff Notes:

    “As long as a plaintiff has the theoretical ability to purchase a single shot musket and keep it in his abode ,the Federal Bench believes the 2nd Amendment is being observed.”

    1. avatar AmericanSpirit says:

      “Don’t worry, we’re only gonna duct tape over 95% of your mouth so you can’t yell ‘fire!’ in a crowded theatre. After all, we’re interested about the safety of the public and ‘crime control’.”

      “See, cause it’s for your own good (promise!), we’re reasonably certain that this tape is not a substantial burden to your rights under the first amendment.”

      Whoever came up with the duct tape and (I think) UBC analogy a few post back … Brilliant.

      1. avatar Marine 03 says:

        Hi Dave the Dude.

        1. avatar AmericanSpirit says:

          Not Dave the Dude, better things to do than make alternate profiles for websites I care enough about to comment regularly at.

          Like sex, shooting things, and work.

          In that order

      2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        I’ll take credit for the duct tape analogy … I think that was me.

        Nevertheless, the way that you expanded that concept to leaving 5% of your mouth not covered with duct tape is outstanding. I’ll shamelessly use that expansion of my analogy as often as possible.

        1. avatar AmericanSpirit says:

          Please do.

    2. avatar RockOnHellChild says:


  2. avatar RKBA says:

    The constitution is quite clear, and this judge, like most, is a traitor, criminal, and enemy of the people.

    1. avatar Dustin Eward says:

      Unless you’re willing to DO soemthing about it, it really doesn’t matter, does it?

      1. avatar Shawn says:

        +1 Many people say things but actually do nothing. Giving money to the NRA does nothing except fatten the wallets of those who run it. But, I guess that is okay.

        1. avatar Justin says:

          Wrong! Without the NRA you would have already lost your right to own firearms a long time ago.

        2. avatar Jus Bill says:

          Oh, shut the Hell up about the NRA already. If it wasn’t for the NRA the personal information of pistol permit applicants would be all over the Internet.

        3. avatar H.R. says:

          What’s the NRA supposed to do in a state that’s so full of people who don’t value the RKBA? I don’t have specific numbers on CT, but for this to have passed, there at least has to have been tacit approval by most of the people in the state. It doesn’t make it right, but the NRA isn’t able to work miracles.

        4. avatar Matt says:


          You are wrong. I do not know a single person regardless of how much they are into guns that believes this will do anything. If my grandparents say to me, its stupid its not going to change anything, then there is not tacit approval.

          If the public testimony (90+% pro gun) and 3 hours wait to get into the legislative office building is any testament to how many fought this and did not approve there was not tacit approval.

          Plain and simple the governor and legislature capitalized on a tragedy and extreme emotion. They ignored the people and did exactly what they wanted and what the big out of state players wanted.

          There was far from tacit approval. This always gets me. People who quite obviously know nothing about what happened in CT, don’t live here, and certainly didn’t resist the laws here assume all the gun owners in CT just rolled over and took it because it was the governments will and because CT is blue as the night is long. You think just because the the media didn’t cover it, it didn’t happen? Stop playing right into their hands and perpetuating garbage and helping them divide gun owners. This applies equally to all the people who knock MA, CA, NY, etc etc for not doing anything. Think about it for 5 seconds. Do you think anyone likes being fvcked by the government?

        5. avatar H.R. says:

          You didn’t approve and a lot of gun owners didn’t,
          But a lot of fudd gun owners did.
          And a lot of the rest of the state’s population did.
          And a lot of the rest of the state’s population didn’t care one way or the other.

          I’m not blaming you guys who tried to stop this. I’m just saying you’re outnumbered.

        6. avatar Will says:

          Next step: Vote out those who chose to blow your opinions off and dis the U.S Constitution… or at least try to do what Colorado has done: Ousted 2 by vote and 1 by the knowledge the vote would have done the same to them. Rinse and repeat as often as necessary to get it into their heads the people will not tolerate leadership that uses the U.S. Constitution as toilet paper.

        7. avatar NYC2AZ says:

          Donating specifically to the NRA-ILA goes directly to helping fight political battles around the country.

      2. avatar Eric says:

        Do you have an alternate, concrete course of action to suggest?

        (Do include why you aren’t carrying this endeavor out yourself.)

      3. avatar RKBA says:

        I am ready. Are you?

        Insurrection is long past due.

        1. avatar H.R. says:

          So you’ll be driving to Connecticut to start the insurrection tomorrow then?

        2. avatar Jus Bill says:

          Uh, you go first.

        3. avatar RKBA says:


          It only took three percent to fend off the English and declare independence.

          I don’t think we have three percent of the population now that are real patriots, as you both make very clear.

        4. avatar H.R. says:

          So you’re planning to pack up all your stuff tomorrow and head for Connecticut to fight this injustice with your vote, time, and money?

        5. avatar Andy says:

          My opinion also , a lot of us South of the Mason-Dixon Line feel that time for the tree of liberty’s thirst to be quenched . Be preparedvand ready.Keep your powder dry.

    2. avatar rjoguillory says:

      ..impeach the judge…charge him and convict him of treason and hang him…

      RJ O’Guillory
      Webster Groves – The Life of an Insane Family

  3. avatar Dustin Eward says:

    So, it’s OK to infringe on something that says “shall not be infringed” as long as it is only 1 99% infringement and not a complete and total ban of all things… This is so far removed from reason and sanity there is no way to even bitch about it. It’s just plain fucking nuts.

    1. avatar ChuckN says:

      “Reason and sanity”? You clearly don’t know too many lawyers
      or judges.

    2. avatar ricnroll says:

      I believe it’s time to water the tree of liberty with the blood of many tyrants, as many a patriot has given his…

    3. avatar thatoneguy says:

      I was thinking the same thing. Imagine if they said you couldn’t vote if you are over overweight. While we realize this is a burden on your constitutional rights, it not a large enough burden and it is done for the sake of public health and welfare. Take the stairs.

  4. avatar GS650G says:

    Will the last gun owner out of CT please turn out the lights?

      1. avatar Model 31 says:

        Last one out flips that @$$brained judge the bird.

  5. avatar Accur81 says:

    In other news, prosecution under “Hate Speech” is not a 1st Amendment violation, the NSA spying on your every move is not a 4th Amendment violation, declaring unregistered firearms is not a 5th Amendment violation, and the unequal application of Obamacare is not a 14th Amendment violation.

    I’m underwhelmed by this decision, and I hope the citizens of CT do not comply.

    1. avatar Philip says:

      +1 for a sane comment

    2. avatar Ken Hagler says:

      Exactly. Heller was just fancy lawyer talk for “The Second Amendment means what it says, just like all the other Amendments, and we’ll ignore it whenever we feel like, just like all the other Amendments.”

    3. avatar Andrew says:

      According the anti-firearms forces, they already are in non-compliance due to the sheer # of magazines and rifles not registered…

      The quiet majority telling them to Kindly F*ck Off.

    4. avatar Jus Bill says:

      I think the good citizens of Connecticut will continue to ignore this learned fool as much as they are ignoring their corrupt Governor and Legislature. The Silent Revolt continues apace…

  6. avatar DrWin says:

    What the judge really meant to say is that “it is substantially related to the important governmental interest of public control and crime safety.”

    1. avatar Cliff H says:

      What he is really saying is that this is a political hot potato and he really wants nothing at all to do with it. He decided to make a blatantly wrong and unconstitutional decision knowing that it would be immediately appealed and that someone else would have to make the tough call.

      1. avatar Jus Bill says:


        And now he doesn’t have to worry about what the three-letter agencies have on him.

      2. avatar Matt in FL says:

        Yep. It’s called “drop back five and punt.”

    2. avatar Skyler says:

      That is language used in determining the authority the court has to infringe on rights. In intermediate scrutiny the government must show a substantial government interest that is promoted by the law, such as public safety is theoretically improved. The lowest level of scrutiny uses the “rational basis test” which has come to essentially mean that the government can do whatever it wants to restrict the right as long as it has a reason for why it wants to do so. (Which pretty much nullifies the entire right.)

      So this judge is saying the second amendment is important enough to not use the rational basis test, but it only rates the second level of protection. It does not have the same protection as free speech.

      1. avatar Viking 1456 says:

        Let’s start with District Court Judge to grant an injunction on 2nd Amendment Rights infringement. Not going to happen. Then for both parties to ask for a Summary Judgement; which basically means that both sides are saying, “Judge, you have all the facts in front of you…you make the call”. Not going to happen. This will run up the ladder until it ends up in the Supreme Court. There is not one sitting Judge that will take on this issue by themselves. Be patient CT, refuse to register and quietly pack your bags. With Executive Orders on the horizon the fix is in… Once the damage is done who will care how Constitutional it really is… “From my cold dead hands…” Maybe. I gotta lay off the sauce.

        The Quiet Man

  7. avatar Anon in CT says:

    I was all ready to blame another Democrat appointed judge. But I can’t.

    Poppy Bush. Screwing over firearms owners since 1988.

  8. avatar JAS says:

    Being overturned by the Supreme Court is not a pretty thing on judges resumes.

    He looks like he’s fretting as he signs the order. Wondering why…..

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      Because NSA knows exactly where he’s been surfing when he’s “in chambers working on a decision.”

    2. avatar Chris in CT says:

      With respect, the photo is Gov. Malloy signing he law in the first place, not Judge Covello. He’s pretty low key and in my experience (only civil matters, and ~15 years ago), fairly down-the-middle. Not much here either: Basically a punt, IMHO.

    3. avatar Matt in FL says:

      That photo is Dannel Malloy, Governor of Connecticut, not the judge.

  9. avatar SdubM45 says:

    Really glad I don’t live in Connecticut.

    1. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

      Hello!?! Anybody home? Federal judge. Precedent. Any of these mean anything to you? All it takes is a few more ruling like this and it starts to become a national trend. All that will stop it is a Supreme Court ruling like Heller or MacDonald… oh wait….. If this case is pursued to the SCOTUS we can only hope that they see it our way… that the court makeup hasn’t changed significantly by the time it gets there and those we think are our friend remain so. There are consequences to our poor political choices, if we made the right ones this wouldn’t be an issue before the courts.

  10. avatar BLAMMO says:

    So, he admits that the law burdens the plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights. Now, what is the basis for the government’s claim of a broader public interest? Their say-so?

    1. avatar Mike in CA says:

      Under rational basis review that is exactly their claim. Effectively someone somewhere can think of some justification for the law that relates to the government interest of public safety and therefore it is OK.

      Rational Basis is BS.

    2. avatar Tom W. says:

      To me, an “undue burden” is an infringement. This judge is a contradiction in the first two paragraphs of his ruling.

      Seems he would rather enforce unconstitutional law, and,…wait for it, legislate from the bench to uphold it.

      I miss tar and feathering.

      1. avatar WayneMHK says:

        Seriously. How does one “find the legislation constitutional” knowing it “burdens the Plaintiff’s 2nd Amendment rights”. Those things are mutually exclusive, and it doesn’t take much of an IQ to figure that out. I’m actually a little embarrassed for the man.

  11. avatar Toasty says:

    The entirety of this case rest on the premise that “there are other options available”. This line of thought was thoroughly discarded in heller and McDonald in both the opinions and oral arguments. Wait for it to get to the scotus.

    1. avatar Anon in CT says:

      Depends which side of the bench Kennedy wakes up on.

      1. avatar Skyler says:

        Don’t count on quisling Roberts either.

  12. avatar JeffR says:

    I don’t know how you could rule on this issue without an evidentiary record. Especially with the burden on the state.

  13. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:


  14. avatar ValleyForge77 says:

    I’m looking forward to the ‘forthwith’ part.

  15. avatar Mark N. says:

    One finds it difficult to distinguish between rational basis and intermediate scrutiny in the Second Circuit. All the court requires is “substantial evidence” of a “reasonable relationship” between the policy and the law–which is no different than saying the Plaintiff must demonstrate that the law is, in legal terms, an abuse of legislative discretion.” This approach, of placing the burden of proof on the plaintiff and not on the government, allows the government to succeed merely by showing that there is evidence (“substantial evidence” being a legal term of art that means little more than a fact was proved by competent evidence). this approach is rational basis in sheep’s clothing, and was specifically rejected in the Seventh Circuit.

  16. avatar Randy Drescher says:

    I’m a little tired of this “public safety” shit. When I was a kid “public safety” meant that Blacks were supposed to ride in the back of the bus. This was “reasonable” to the government untill the Supreme Court & National Guard said otherwise./// Obviously, “public” means armed criminals & gangbangers as they are truely safer with these laws, good citizens are less safe with their laws. Wisconsin is no longer controlled by liberal insanity & Illinois will theoretically be there soon…we can’t win em all right away, Randy

    1. avatar H.R. says:

      Somehow we’ve failed to get the Second Amendment framed as a civil right, which is what it is. You’re right… at one time if you were black, public safety dictated that you drink at a different water fountain or eat at a separate lunch counter. At one time, it meant that you could be owned by another person. That was within the law.
      Just because something is judged “legal” doesn’t make it right.

      Hoping that getting it kicked further up the courts gets a more reasonable decision.

    2. avatar Jus Bill says:

      I think that the “silent dissent” (i.e., doing nothing) in Connecticut is effectively nullifying this bad decision. Judging by the number of shootings in Baltimore, the same thing is happening there.

      1. avatar Mack Bolan says:


        The best thing CT gunners can do is to take the road of non-compliance.

  17. avatar Sixpack70 says:

    This ruling is utterly ridiculous. Whenever someone uses the term “balancing rights” it means they are ignoring the constitution and deeming whatever they feel like as their ruling. He is also totally ignoring Heller.

  18. avatar dirk diggler says:

    actually, I am glad he ruled the way he did. He said there is a burden on a fundamental right. that triggers higher than intermediate scrutiny under Heller and McDonald. Moreover, the good judge didnt create a record so although the 2nd will let this crap go forward, it just sets up the supremes.

    1. avatar Sixpack70 says:

      They still have to accept it don’t they? I hope if it does appear in front of the supreme court nobody pissed in Kennedy’s oatmeal that morning or we could be screwed.

    2. avatar FortWorthColtGuy says:

      Do you think the SCOTUS will even take this or the SAFE Act ruling up or will they remain silent?

      1. avatar Chris in CT says:

        I think the Supremes will take it. I’ve said since all this madness began that the only real question is whether a case challenging one of the de facto bans will make it to SCOTUS before Kennedy and/or Scalia croaks. (I believe they both have said they won’t retire under this administration, so an expired Justice is the only thing that will change the makeup; those two are unfortunately the most likely candidates, actuarially speaking.) I also agree with dirk, the ruling seems to concede that a fundamental right is burdened. Strict v. heightened scrutiny wasn’t really resolved in Heller, so we’ll see.

    3. avatar Mark N. says:

      He guys, slow down. This case is a long way from the SCOTUS. First it has to go up on appeal to the Second Circuit, and unless that body deals with the case summarily, it could easily be two or more years for a decision to issue, and only then will it be ripe for Supreme Court review. By way of example, the Ninth Circuit has four cases pending on “may issue” CCW and one an appeal of a motion for preliminary injunction in an open carry case. it took about a year before the briefing was completed on the “may issue” cases, and although oral argument was scheduled in short order, and argument was heard December 2012, there has been no decision. And when it does decide, there is a substantial probability that an en banc petition will be filed and granted, further delaying the ultimate decision. In my opinion, SCOTUS is unlikely to accept another 2A case until the Ninth weighs in. The Ninth is the largest district by far, and is the only one not to issue a decision as to the applicable standard of review where there are states having restricted issue/carry. If I were a betting man (which I am not), I would bet that there would not be a 2A decision from SCOTUS until after the 2016 election.

      1. avatar Anon in CT says:

        I believe that Scalia at least has indicated that he wants to take up a another 2A case, and it looks like it will be the CT or NY law. 2016 is only 2 years away. As a Canadian, the pace of US judicial review of constitutionally questionable laws seems almost rocket-like.

        If I were a betting man, I’d say that the 10 round limit may survive, registration will probably survive but the 1-feature tests likely won’t survive. The old 1994-style 2 feature tests were moderately burdensome, but the new tests completely bar whole classes of weapons in very common useage.

  19. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    I am incredulous.

    Sometimes, I have a difficult time thinking like ‘they’ do.
    This is one of those times.
    I can’t decide, a frontal lobotomy, or a bottle infrontofme.

    1. avatar Sixpack70 says:

      Cocaine is a hell of a drug.

    2. avatar A samurai says:

      I’m for Bottle infrontofme. /headshake

  20. avatar Jay In Florida says:

    The people get screwed again.
    But if this is what the folks who live there seem to want all 2 of them.
    Its up to the rest of them to grow a set and just have a little bit of civil disobedience and be willing to suffer the possible consequences.

    If I lived in one of these slave states or my present state ever goes against me in my personal beliefs and properties.
    Ive said it before and I will say it again here in plain print for all to see..
    Come for me and or my property…………………………………….
    Ill take at least one, maybe more of them whom so it ever they may be with me.
    That’s a promise not just print for prints sake.

    These judges are just passing the buck……….higher up eventually.

    1. avatar Philip says:

      Hmm, good luck with that dude.

    2. avatar A samurai says:

      “We’ve made too many compromises already; too many retreats. … The line must be drawn here! This far, no further!” – Patrick Stewart (1996).

        1. avatar A samurai says:

          Exactly! P.S. Thats THE Star Trek movie where you find out the one weakness of the Borg is of course, Tommy guns, which they don’t have in the 24th century. Of course, only when guns are gone will you find out they are the only effective defense against something horrible.

          Also: Woot FL. On this issue, we must all hang together, for if we fail we shall all Hang separately.” -Ben Franklin. (see I can quote people that weren’t in Star Trek)

  21. avatar squashpup says:

    “The court concludes that the legislation is constitutional. While the act burdens the plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights, it is substantially related to the important governmental interest of public safety and crime control.”

    Sounds a lot like the opinion of the Supreme Court when they began allowing sobriety checkpoints. Their opinion basically was, “Sure, it’s a violation of the Fourth Amendment, but we’re going to allow it. Because Alcohol.”

    And then, like now, a group of mothers applauded.

    So, if it is substantially related to the “important government interest of public safety and crime control”, then I suppose, in a few years, when crime has skyrocketed and the public is more unsafe than ever, that they’ll repeal the law?

    1. avatar A samurai says:

      Or they will just clamp down even harder; on knives, or shovels, or speech, or whatever other “weapon” they can vilify then. I once thought that they would stop at guns, But one day I found out what a world without guns considers weapons, when British paper reported that 2 men were arrested for plotting to kidnap Joss Stone. I forget how long ago this was or which paper, but later I will try to find the article and post a citation as a reply to this post. The paper reported the men were arrested for waiting outside her estate for days. In the car with them was an “arsenal of weapons: Duct tape, rope, pliers, a box cutter, black yard bags, and (my memory is failing I think the last thing was a folding ladder)!” OMG!.
      I dont know about you but none of those things seem like weapons to me. Sounds like a tuesday trip to home depot… We can’t sit back and hope that aggressive legislation will some day be repealed. If we do we can look forward to being arrested for duct tape.
      Stay tuned…..

  22. avatar Randy Drescher says:

    A citizen & the cops faces the exact same criminals. It is unreasonable to expect the cops to have these restrictions yet reasonable for citizens. The “your gun could be stolen” argument holds as much water as the “your car could be stolen”, matter of fact, your drain cleaner could be stolen, your kitchen knives, your chainsaw. Next up, the government has substantial interest in controlling your every move, say it isn’t so o, Randy

    1. avatar Jack in MT says:

      I agree, which is why this passage in the opinion was kind of mind boggling:

      “The court concludes that law enforcement, unlike the general public, often confront organized groups of criminals with the most dangerous weaponry. Furthermore, the differences between the general public and law enforcement are similar to the differences between the public and members of the military, if not even more pronounced.

      The charge of protecting the public, and the training that accompanies that charge, is what differentiates the exempted personnel from the rest of the population.” pg. 30-31

      What the hell? Where do law enforcement confront these criminals? Do they only find criminals in designated zones off-limits from the general public? Furthermore, since there are numerous rulings stating that police can’t be held liable for failing to protect the public, in some instances the public must protect and defend themselves, it would seem unreasonable that they cannot employ the same tools to do so. I really hope the lawyers bring this up on appeal.

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        I don’t see how the court, in that paragraph, squares itself with, A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. Nothing, nada, zip about law enforcement, etc… only shall not be infringed. This isn’t about crime, it’s about tyranny. Hell, the judge’s whole ruling is bullshit.

      2. avatar Randy Drescher says:

        Right Jack, to listen to the government it would seem that police station robberies is quite the epidemic. It is the good people that need MORE protection & firepower than cops not less. We had an armed robber shot & killed by a cop last night, today 3 armed robbers shot up a grocery store & some of the patrons WHILE they were raising their hands. So much for the brady just give them your money & you will be alright. We have it good in Wisconsin,now,finally, with none of the restrictive bs. I want to see every last city free though, Randy

      3. avatar H.R. says:

        If anything, you could make the case that normal citizens are even more in need of superior weapons to deal with threats from criminals.

        Police officers are armed and trained by taxpayer funds and have a large number of armed friends who will burn rubber to their location immediately if there is any problem. They helicopters, dogs, bulletproof vests, patrol rifles, and swat teams who’ll come to their aid. Some of them even have honest-to-God armored personnel carriers.

        What do you and I have?
        Well I’ll tell you Jack, I remember my grandfather calling the police to deal with an issue when I was a kid and watching the police drive past our rural driveway half a dozen times while they tried to find us. If we’d been in imminent peril, we’d have either handled it ourselves or died.

      4. avatar peirsonb says:

        There is one point in there that you guys are missing….the “protecting the public” part. That contradicts judicial precedent set in Warren v. D.C. stating that the police, in fact, have absolutely NO duty to protect anyone.

        Whoever is handling the appeal needs to latch on to that (as well as a whole host of other nonsense in the decision).

  23. avatar Will says:

    The people of Ct through their elected representative’s legislation said Government interest is more important than their SA rights. The judge washed his hands of it.

    1. avatar Anon in CT says:

      Yes, the people of CT elected total losers, but I don’t recally any of these folks campaigning on gun control during the various elections which put them in office. No, they just waited quietly, biding their time until there was an awful tragedy they could exploit.

      Let this be a lesson to all about the danger of electing “reasonable” liberals.

    2. avatar SRD from ct says:

      This was not a popular law in ct. It was passed as an emergency bill which bypasses public debate. It’s a provision for natural disasters and such when immediate funding is needed. The bill was voted and passed the day it first introduced. Ct people didn’t want it. Even our republicans turned on us. None of the people who voted ran on any anti gun platform.

      1. avatar murray says:

        Unelect them next time then, you have to defend your constitutional rights, in the UK we gave them up temporarily to fight 2 world wars and to get health care and social security (sound familiar?) then got conned into joining the EU and never got them back, PROBABLY NEVER WILL. Governments always always seek to increase their powers over the electorate in every way possible, it must be resisted. Once they are gone they’re gone for ever.

  24. avatar NJDevils72 says:

    They need to appeal this decision and bring it up before the SCOTUS. The right to bear arms needs to be argued the same way that the right to free speech and the right to vote have been argued.

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      Ummm, FYI they have. Counsel did concede that the government may enact valid time/sensitive place restrictions outside the home, and person restrictions such as felons and the mentally ill. But no case has reached the court (other than Miller 80 years ago in re SBS under the NFA) concerning restrictions on particular weapons.

  25. avatar Henry Bowman says:

    Anyone else think leftist judges will be one of the main reasons for another civil war?

  26. avatar Lawrence says:

    Someone please explain how this decision couldn’t be used to easily justify banning semi-auto pistols or revolvers if single shot handguns were still available to the public?

    Or pump/semi-auto shotguns if single shots were still legal?

    Clearly this is not the right conclusion under Heller …

  27. avatar JohnO says:

    The clear winners here are the lawyers.

    1. avatar AmericanSpirit says:

      The only clear winners in any significant dispute in modern America are always the lawyers.

      They’re the ones who write the laws, and later in the life-cycle as judges they’re the only ones who interpret them.

      Maybe we should change that. Methinks it might be part of our problems.

      1. avatar Mark N. says:

        Without lawyers, there is no law. Without laws, there is anarchy. With anarchy, there is no justice, no certainty, no civilization. Without judges and courts, the only way to solve intractable disputes is by force of arms, and we return to a medieval feudal society where the law is decided by the strongest and the better armed. You know, like Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Chad, Central African Republic, Somalia, South Sudan, Mali….I think you get the picture.

        1. avatar AmericanSpirit says:


          Yeah, and there isn’t really a good workaround either, but I’m thinking more about the lawyer-lobbyist-judge cycle rather than the profession in and of itself.

          Learn (part of – too much to actually know the whole of) the law, use that knowledge of the law in employment of and for those concerned about relevant portions of law, mainly by participating in writing of or otherwise influencing laws, then graduating to interpretation after a palatable time interval.

          I (think) I know an honest judge, but it seems like if one went through the above steps it’s hard to avoid elitist bias due to the influence already enjoyed previously.

          Never met a lawyer that wasn’t in it for the money – I’d prefer that they stuck to courtrooms and didn’t draft legislation unless they were specifically elected to do so, rather than dictated to on how to write the law by legislators in the pockets of the lobby of the relevant industry.

        2. avatar SomeOneInWA says:

          This seems BS to me. You are required to know the law. It means that the law should be written in such a way that average educated people would understand it and be able to comply. We don’t need any lawyers for the laws to exists. We just need to have simpler and less of them. If you remove all the bullshit “ban” laws (malum prohibitum), there are very few remaining. So no, without lawyers the civilization doesn’t end.

        3. avatar Mack Bolan says:

          If you aren’t familiar with Bill Whittle, definitely check him out.

          He talks about someoneinwa point at the 2:00 minute mark in this video:

          It’s a bit old but his defense of the Second amendment and gun ownership is awesome:

      2. avatar H.R. says:

        They have done us good service on cases like Heller though. Didn’t get everything we may have liked, but it could have been far worse.

        Personally, I’m thinking that becoming a lawyer is one of the best ways I can think of to help defend the RKBA.

        1. avatar AmericanSpirit says:

          More power to ya (and us, by extension!).

          As long as there’s a civil system for settling disputes, we’ll always need lawyers or some equivalent. Otherwise, yes, insert war-torn third world country here.

          Knowledgeable firearm owners and pro-constitution lawyers with a bone to pick and the dollars to match. That might be more of what we need instead.

          I wish I had more resources to fight the good fight, but aiming to get a new shooter or several to the range three or four times a year is stretching it what with the way ammo has been.

  28. avatar Philip says:

    So what was the text of this new law (now that I’ve tossed in some choice comments 🙂 )?

    1. avatar Jay In Florida says:

      read this for yourself please then make an informed comment.
      It like NY States “Safe Act” which another Federal Judge declared constitutional in the same vein………..Passing the buck.
      Eventually both will end up before the Supreme Court and we will get screwed yet again. Maybe??
      As long as you can own a 6 shot revolver to protect yourself.
      All these turds will screw us.

      1. avatar Philip says:

        Wow, thanks I think? Hoping for the short version. I’m not voting on this bill tomorrow, am I?

  29. avatar Pat says:

    For the Children.

    1. avatar A samurai says:

      Who wouldn’t? For the children?

      ” ‘A matter of national security’ – The age old cry of the oppressor.” – Patrick Stewart.

      I love getting so many quotes about the dangers of infringement on human rights from a British actor.

      1. avatar Pat says:

        Yup. Please step into the showers….for the children.

  30. avatar Yoel Grauberg says:

    Incrementalism, ban AR15s and claim nobody needs more than a lever action, then some dork does a spree killing with a Winchester and they will claim nobody needs more than a single shot, then some dork etc etc etc….

    1. avatar A samurai says:

      Most of the killing sprees already are committed using pump action shotguns. A weapon NO ONE has suggested banning…. Yet.
      We are all frogs in a giant pot…. The water is already starting to bubble.

    2. avatar Ing says:

      I don’t need more than a lever action. I don’t have more than a lever action.

      What I do have…or should…is the right to choose for myself what I need.

  31. avatar Lawrence says:

    Heller clearly stated that an outright ban of a recognized class of firearm is unconstitutional.

    This judge concludes that it is not an outright ban because guns purchased before April 2013 are still lawful (if registered) and that law enforcement and military are not banned from possessing them?

    That’s weak …

    Then he concludes “The challenged legislation provides alternate access to similar firearms and does not categorically ban a universally recognized class of firearms”

    This is very weak …

    A near total ban on semi-auto rifles is obviously a categorical ban on a universally recognized class … no other conclusion can reasonably be made.

    Then he argues that that since pistols are still available for self defense, rifles can be banned without offending the Heller decision?

    Ahhhh .. No. This will not stand scrutiny in the Supreme Court.

    This really is a poorly reasoned decision the more I look at it. And that is good for our appeals ..

    1. avatar VigilantHose says:

      He may have torched his own argument in justifying the burden on the exercise of the right with the point that the ban still allows access to similar arms. If one can still access similar arms (in function, ease of application, etc.), the CT “bad feature” test starts to look arbitrary, which would fail a rational basis test, much less intermediate scrutiny.

  32. avatar Dave s says:

    the moral of this disaster is that appointing judges is important as is electing them.

    But Lawyers are paid to twist the meaning of words and the law to their own ends, so its not surprising.

  33. avatar Mack Bolan says:

    I may have missed it but is the text of the briefs anywhere?

    Was this argued solely on 2A infringement rather than the more obvious 5th amendment infringement?

    1. avatar Matt in FL says:

      You can find all the filings here:

      Michel & Associates is the plaintiff’s firm.

      1. avatar Mack Bolan says:

        Thank you Matt

  34. avatar cubby123 says:

    Gee judge”although some burdening” what part of shall not be infringed”don’t you get? OH THAT’S RIGHT , you never read the 2nd amendment and you are bias.Ok then time for a recall of an ignorant crooked judge.
    This asshole just makes up his own laws.”I believe it’s in the betterment of the community that I judge jerkoff rewrite the laws and do what I want.And by the way I take bribes so I can side with my stupid cop buddies.

  35. avatar Hannibal says:

    Of course the judge didn’t want to hear oral arguments. The fix was in and he didn’t want to look even stupider in the court than he does affixing his signature to the decision.

  36. avatar ChainsawWieldingManiac says:

    Ah, my favorite: say you’re using intermediate scrutiny, and then use rational basis anyways.

  37. avatar lolinski says:

    So they admit its a burden? Since they said it doesn’t impose a substantial burden, a non-substantial burden is still a burden. A burden is also an infringment, isn’t it?

  38. avatar ErrantVenture11 says:

    What the heck. He stated point blank that the Act is an infringement on the 2nd amendment, but apparently isn’t a big enough infringement to be unconstitutional. I don’t think the 2nd amendment mentioned extent of infringement. Maybe I missed something.

  39. avatar 27 Words says:

    Hmmm, I guessed I missed the constitutional amendment, where we changed the wording to, “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be substantially burdened.” I’m going to have to start watching MSNBC so that I’m better informed.

  40. avatar Mmmtacos says:

    All I read was:

    “…the act burdens the plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights, it is substantially related to the important governmental interest…”

  41. avatar some_guy says:

    Not going to say this but how do we know when to vote from the rooftops?

  42. avatar BDub says:

    …balancing Rights against the interests of the State….is the most repugnant concept I can imagine.

  43. avatar Lawrence says:

    “It is no answer to say, as petitioners do, that it is permissible to ban the possession of handguns so long as the possession of other firearms (i.e., long guns) is allowed” DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA v. HELLER

    Despite this holding, Judge Covello concludes that the inverse is true … that it is permissible to ban “assault rifles” because the people still have access to handguns for protection.

    “Unlike the law struck down in Heller the legislation here
    does not amount to a complete prohibition on firearms for self defense in the home. Indeed,the legislation does not prohibit possession of the weapon cited as the “quintessential self defense weapon” in Heller i.e., the handgun.” SHEW v MALLOY

    So to paraphrase, it is not Constitutionally permissible to ban handguns by arguing that rifles are still available for protection, but it is permissible to ban commonly owned semi-automatic rifles because handguns are still available for protection.

    Ahhh yeah .. that makes sense?

    This is why oral argument is necessary .. and likely why it was avoided.

  44. avatar Chris says:

    The judge kicked the can down the road but did it in a way he knows will be overturned.

    This is a typical political ruling, it has to be appealed to a court that has no political horse in this race.

  45. avatar Malakie says:

    Well add Connecticut to my list of states we have been boycotting for the last year or more.. Our current list includes: New York, New Jersey, Connecticut (now), Maryland, Washington D.C., Illinois, Colorado, California.

    When you consider the project I purchase for did around $60 million in business around the country, with probably $6 million in weapons, ammo and tactical gear overall, that is a hit they all get to feel. From the food we buy, to the other numerous items, none of those states are seeing ANY business from us anymore and will not until things change.

    Just like the gun makers and accessory makers pulling out of those states, others like us are pulling all our business out as well.

  46. avatar Jamie says:

    Guys, don’t register your guns or magazines. Screw them, if most of you don’t comply, what are they gonna do?

  47. avatar LordGopu says:

    So they acknowledge that it burdens and therefore infringes on the second amendment and yet they seem to think it’s constitutional? How does that work?

  48. avatar Kyle says:

    Not surprised by this. I am surprised that the gun organizations even challenged the NY law and the CT law (and the D.C. law) in court. My expectation is that the judges will find some kind of weasel logic to uphold them. For those putting all their faith in the SCOTUS, I wouldn’t be so faithful. It’s one thing to strike down outright gun bans, it’s another thing to make a ruling that essentially severely limits the regulation of gun ownership, by striking down AWB legislation. Roberts showed he didn’t want to make any large ruling with Obamacare, what makes people so sure he won’t find some weasel logic to ultimately uphold an AWB? Or that Kennedy would be on our side?

    All gun rights organizations are doing is making all of these rulings establish precedent that AWBs are constitutional. And when the attempts at appeals fail, this will be even moreso.

  49. avatar David P says:

    This judge wanted rid of this ASAP. Not only did he pass judgement without hearing oral arguements (not uncommon but helpful in appeals process) but he also added opinion that will contradicts itself. “It’s constitutional but burdensome” “firearms and magazine in common usage” “law enforcement exemption because of additional training”. Whatever reason this judge has for not wanting to make a honest ruling, I don’t know maybe he though it should be decided by a panel, but he did inject enough that it will be easy to move forward with. Because of this judge it is far from being over.

  50. avatar Mediocrates says:

    Another fantasy opinion by a Federal judge. Please show me in The Constitution where it says this vague and undefined “need” of a state trumps the Constitution.

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