Columbus Bump Stock Ban Ruled Unconstitutional

Columbus Bump Stock Ban Unconstitutional


A few weeks ago, we noted that a Franklin County, Ohio judge issued a temporary restraining order blocking the bump stock bank enacted by the Columbus City Council. That seemed a no-brainer as Ohio has a preemption law on the books that prohibits cities from enacting gun control laws that are more stringent than anything that exists at the state level.

The city of Columbus had been sued by the Buckeye Firearms Association and Ohioans for Concealed Carry. It was plain to anyone who’s familiar with the English language that the bump stock ban ordinance was a violation of the preemption law. The Columbus City Council, however, tried a little legal fancy footwork in an attempt to skirt the preemption law.

Friday, the case was heard by a Franklin county court and . . .

In the split decision, Franklin County Judge David E. Cain wrote that bump stocks clearly are a firearm “component,” which municipalities cannot regulate under state law, even though the city’s ordinance defined it as an “accessory.” …

Chuck LaRosa, a director with Ohioans for Concealed Carry, said he thinks the ruling is the first in Ohio pertaining to a bump-stock ban.

“Of course we are happy with the ruling on the bump-stock ban. The Ohio state Constitution and (state law) is plainly written and easy for anyone to understand.”

Easy to understand, unless you’re attempting to slide a little anti-gun regulation onto the books.

The suit challenging the ban had been supported by the state.

“The Ohio Attorney General’s Office filed our brief to vindicate Ohio’s law requiring that regulation of firearms be uniform across the state. The court’s ruling emphasizes the importance of that law,” Dan Tierney, a spokesman for Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, said in a statement.

Now we’ll see if the city of Columbus wants to appeal the ruling.


  1. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

    Well No Duh,as all gun control infringements are UnConstitutional whether there is preemption or not

    1. avatar CZJay says:

      There is nation wide preemption. It’s called the 2nd Amendment of the Bill of Rights from the Constitution of the United States.

      1. avatar uncommon_sense says:



        No, no, no. The United States Constitution (which includes the Second Amendment) does not apply to the states. It only applies to Washington D.C. It does not apply to U.S. territories (like Guam or Puerto Rico) or federal land (like national parks) because those lands existed before our founders founded the United States. And it does not apply to Native American reservations because the federal government entered into treaties with the Native Americans. Rather, the U.S. Constitution only applies when the federal government says so, because compelling government interests and public safety (as the federal government defines them) are always superior to the U.S. Constitution.


    2. avatar frank speak says:

      cities…particularly liberal bastions like columbus always feel they;re “special”…they need to worry more about all those somalis [with machetes] than bumpstocks….

  2. avatar Oz says:

    Well no shit.

  3. avatar Moltar says:

    Of course they’re gonna appeal!!! They’ll continue to do so until they get a court that agrees with them or until the defendants run outta cash to bankroll the defense.

    1. avatar strych9 says:

      Technically the city is the defendant.

      Buckeye is the plaintiff.

    2. avatar California Richard says:

      Yep…. They won’t give up, ever. They will continue to judge shop, file law suits, harrass, intentionally misinterpret laws, and change the meaning of words so they can advance their agenda. We can do the same, but our problem is that we are viewed as powerful because we are the ones with the guns. They will always be seen as weak and brave, because they are pussified little sheep standing up to the big bad wolf….. sheepdog really, but all dogs look like wolves to helpless sheep. Sheep love the “weak man’s struggle” and wolves love a defanged sheepdog…. odd how scared little sheep (Liberals) and wolves (violent opportunists) always come together over how much they hate the dogs. Dogs go bye-bye; wolves eat sheep. Surviving sheep move out of Detroit/ Chicago/ Mayland/ New York/ California/ Mexico/ Cuba/ Russia/ England/ China/ etc. and move to “doglandia”. Wash, rinse, repeat.

    3. avatar Mark N. says:

      The State of Ohio joined with the Buckeye Firearms Association–and I don’t think there is any realistic chance that the state runs out of money before Columbus does. So let them appeal. The Ohio Supreme court 9and this case is in the Ohio court system) hasn’t had any real difficulties invalidating laws enacted by the three C”s (Columbus,. Cleveland and Cincinnati) before.

  4. avatar FedUp says:

    Judge Cain also said in the ruling that the city can enforce new penalties for domestic abusers caught with guns. He had issued a temporary injunction blocking the enforcement of both ordinances after gun-rights advocates sued last month.

    How does this half of the decision not directly contradict preemption?

    1. avatar Binder says:

      Your argument is that the local penalty for armed robbery should be the same for unarmed robbery because of the 2nd or state preemption of firearms laws. Trust me, that is one argument you are likely to lose

      1. avatar FedUp says:

        My argument is that the local penalty for firearm possession is not legitimate in the face of a state law prohibiting local legislation of firearms.

        Firearms possession = firearm law.
        Robbery ≠ firearm law.

  5. avatar Binder says:

    The bump stock ban is NOT unconstitutional, just that it violates State preemption law. There is NOTHING about this ruling protecting bump stocks at the state level. So is that over 30 rounds ban still in place.

    1. avatar Random NYer says:

      Yeah, this title is just inaccurate. If that were the case this would be a much bigger deal than it is.

        1. avatar JeffR says:

          I cannot find a link to the written decision but it is highly unlikely the decision was based on Ohio’s constitution rather than a state preemption law. Regardless, defending your headline based on local reporters’ descriptions of it rather than the actual written decision is a bit moronic to say the least. Do better.

    2. avatar Ralph says:

      RandomNYer and JeffR, the Ohio court ruled that the bump stock ban was “unconstitutional under the Ohio Constitution.” Here’s the opinion, which you can read for yourselves:

      The next time you want to rake Dan over the coals, please have a clue. Or do better. And if I could easily find the opinion, why couldn’t you?

      Don’t bother to answer. I already know.

      1. avatar JeffR says:

        Thank you for providing a link to the decision. Perhaps explaining that the judge held that it violated a home rule provision in the Ohio constitution – similar to a state preemption law – and not the 2nd amendment of the Ohio or US constitutions also would be useful to state. Get over yourself.

        1. avatar No one of consequence says:

          Hmmm. Tough call, tough call, but … I think I’ll vote that Ralph is the one who gets to stay on the island.

        2. avatar JeffR says:

          Perhaps, I was a bit too snarky in my first post. But, if TTAG is going to criticize people for not analyzing 2A decisions correctly, it should link to and accurately describe the 2A decisions on which it is reporting. People should not have to go searching for the decisions or rely on Ralph to dig them up. I am done with this. I hope TTAG does better in the future.

    3. avatar Brian says:

      The 30 round thing has been gone for a few years now already. Around 2015 IIRC is when they finally did away with it.

  6. avatar Charles Parker says:

    The problem here is that the “State” has unlimited access to taxpayer funds with which to support its position, an enormous advantage. How to offset that, eh?

    1. avatar CZJay says:

      Firepower and willpower, but that requires sacrifices…

    2. avatar frank speak says:

      state legislatures don’t like their power usurped….

  7. avatar CZJay says:

    Can you now throw the people who wrote and passed the “law” into prison?

    All enemies foreign and domestic.

    1. avatar AZgunner says:

      I’ve said for a long time that when a law is found to be blatantly unconstitutional, the legislators who wrote it should face criminal prosecution. As things currently are, there are no repercussions for trying to undermine the constitution.

      1. avatar Francis says:

        Except for the 2A. That’s why the tyrants want to undermine it.

  8. avatar Chris T from KY says:

    I’m glad to see a state government fight for bump stocks. In today’s world state governments pick and choose which laws to enforce and which laws not to enforce.

    1. avatar neiowa says:

      It makes a difference if you have a commie pinko State Attorney General (or President) warming the seat. In Iowa we have a commie pinko Attorney Gen (Miller). And we all had such a faux President for 8yr (cursed be his name).

  9. avatar Ranger Rick says:

    Well I’ll be, a judge that can read and follow the law.

  10. avatar Brian says:

    Pretty sure DeWine is just trying to gain some votes by siding with the gun groups since he’s the nominee to run for governor under the R banner. His previous voting records on gun control says he’ll probably turn into another Kasuck before his time is up.

    1. avatar FedUp says:

      DeWine would have to become a lot more pro-gun to turn into Kasich.

      He’s the same Mike DeWine who Human Events Online named among the Top 10 anti-gun U.S. Senators…

      1. avatar Brian says:

        What’s really sad is that BFA supported DeWine recently for the republican nominee to run for governor against Mary Taylor.

  11. avatar Timothy Toroian says:

    Cities should realize that states aren’t going to let them run amok of preemption laws like some cities and states do with this sanctuary horse hockey. If states permitted such regarding guns who knows what some podunk little burg would conjure up about speeding or collecting a toll for driving through their town.

    1. avatar No one of consequence says:

      Such nonsense usually stops only when a state-level pol falls afoul of the toll or speed trap … so if the locals are smart enough to target mostly out-of-state plates, it can be a good racket.

  12. avatar Make EM PAY says:

    So I want to know if the Columbus City Council is going to pay the legal fees and damages to the defense for trying to enact a clearly frivolous law in direct conflict with the States Law. They get away with this shit because they know you are going to have to pay to fight it and they want to burden the Pro 2A supporters to beat them in to financial ruin and ultimate submission. They need to understand it is against the LAW!

  13. avatar truckman says:

    The way I read and understand the Constitution we are suppused to be alloed to own any gun the miltary has to protect the country and to keep the goverment under control

  14. avatar Alan says:

    Any action taken agaInst the idiots who knowingly enacted unconstitutional legislation, despite have no doubt having been so informed? None envisioned, big surprise, isn’t it. Expect more such rubbish too.

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