ar-15 assault weapon AK
(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)
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From the Firearms Policy Coalition . . .

Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) is asking the United States Supreme Court to strike down Maryland’s unconstitutional ban on so-called “assault weapons” in a petition filed today. FPC’s petition seeks to have the Court overrule a misguided Fourth Circuit decision that held common semi-automatic firearms like the AR-15 rifle were “like M-16s” and unprotected by the Second Amendment. The petition for certiorari in Bianchi v. Frosh can be viewed at

“The firearms banned by Maryland are clearly protected under any honest reading of the Second Amendment and the Court’s Heller and McDonald decisions,” said Adam Kraut, FPC’s senior director of legal operations. “For over a decade, lower courts have ignored the text of the Constitution, binding Supreme Court precedent, and the relevant history and tradition to improperly uphold bans on constitutionally protected common arms. However, this case presents the Court with an ideal vehicle to both address the scope of protected arms and constitutionally infirm analysis applied by these recalcitrant lower courts. Just as Federal District Court Judge Roger T. Benitez held in our Miller v. Bonta case, the Supreme Court should grant this petition for certiorari and make clear that these common arms are protected and cannot be banned by any government.”

“Like the handguns at issue in Heller and McDonald, these semi-automatic firearms are ‘in common use’ and ‘typically possessed by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes.,’” notes the petition. “They may be freely purchased and used in the vast majority of States, they are no more dangerous than any other semi-automatic firearm, and Americans own them by the millions for purposes such as home-defense, hunting, and target shooting.” The petition ends by saying that the Court “should grant the writ to prevent the guide penned by the Fourth Circuit from leading the lower courts down a path that will eviscerate the protections intermediate scrutiny was designed to afford.”

fpc firearms policy coalition bump stock ban suit

A full list of FPC’s lawsuits and Second Amendment initiatives can be found at For timely updates, follow FPC on InstagramTwitterFacebookYouTube.

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  1. Well damn here I was figuring the challenge would come from CA or here in NY. May be able to own a mp5 before moving after all. Now to see if any future decision would cover all those evil features so an AR-15 can have a detachable magazine and not look like a sci-fi dystopia prop.

    • My God, I hope so. I have a special hatred for AWBs, since it really seems like any lay person should be able to tell the features of a semiautomatic firearm really will make only minor changes to its effectiveness.

      • How about cutting the tit for tat crap and ask the court to strike down, “Gun Control?”

        This charade in courts and legislation that gives Gun Control standing makes as much sense as giving slave shacks, nooses, burning crosses, concentration camps, gas chambers, swastikas and such racism, genocide atrocities standing. “Gun Control” is and was right smack dab in the middle of it all leading the charge.

        When are those with the megaphones like A. Gottlieb and Tom Grisham of “Gun Talk Radio” going to man-up and get off the merry-go-round leading to the demise of The Second Amendment? They are not so it’s up to you to define Gun Control as History Clearly Defines Gun Control.

        Not only are the living obligated to pass cherished rights along the living are also obligated to stand for those throughout history who were knocked down and ran over by Gun Control.

        • Ultimately yes getting rid of gun control as well as other totalitarian tools is the goal but short of a lot of blood and chaos the process is slow and requires articulation and the ability for the argument to be presented and heard by enough people to be popular as well as being legal otherwise our rights are merely blue laws awaiting repeal. Fortunately hard times tend to remind people the government is rarely able to help let alone willing.

    • There is one coming from CA soon. The Benitez decision mentioned in the article, upheld by a three judge appeals panel, was reversed by the Ninth Circuit en banc recently. A petition for cert should be filed in the near term. That will add additional incentive to grant cert.

  2. We shall see . . . . . even if the Court decides to hear it, that doesn’t mean we’re going to get a friendly ruling.

    • Naturally, it’s as much that it is coming up at all that is amazing to me. That it is coming out of Maryland is interesting as I remember their laws can be a bit convoluted as opposed to NY where we just make up vague wording on some definitions to allow flexibility in enforcement and wiggle room on legal challenges. Need to review Maryland and see just how convoluted they are.

      • Maryland is a hard-core blue state…the suggestion that some western counties might leave to join West Virginia is actually a pretty good idea…grow weary of having to worry while passing thru there on a Florida run….

    • that “in common use” thing needs to be cleared up….states are free to ban mg ownership…but this is a different kettle of fish because of the sheer numbers of the semis owned….

  3. What’s with all the focus on “common use”? Why is “shall not be infringed” not at center stage?

      • What he said.

        In ‘Heller’, the Court held that “weapons in common use” are expressly protected under the 2A. Semi-auto rifles are very much in common use, the AR platform has an estimated 15 million examples in circulation. That’s about as “in common use” as it gets in the gun world…

        • Hey it’s only the 2nd most popular semi in all of gun history and thousands of models. Somehow that isn’t “common” enough for the gun grabbers.

        • The “common use” phrase is probably one of Scalia’s biggest mistakes. The courts have already ruled that the Founders expected technological advancement, but Heller precludes it. When caseless ammo, liquid or gas propellants, rail/coil guns, self-guiding small arms projectiles, lasers, phasers, blasters, and phased plasma rifle in the 40-watt range are developed to the point of usefulness, they can be immediately banned because they aren’t in common use due to just being invented. As the technology matures, it can still be restricted to only government because they aren’t in common use due to they’ve been banned since inception.

      • I know it was Heller, everyone. It was a statement of exasperation.

        The problem with focusing on “common use” is that anything not deemed in common use becomes fair play for Leftist judges to permit prohibitions for. “Shall not be infringed” means exactly that. And everyone’s zeroed in on “in common use”.

    • Baby steps. We lost a lot of ground on the culture front. Our rights have been chipped away and we must restore it the same way we lost it.

      “Shall not be infringed” doesn’t jive with common folk and fair weather gun activists.

  4. Again, with the “levels of scrutiny”. FPC is endorsing the concept that the Second Amendment is a “second class right”; a concept of which appears nowhere in the founding documents.

        • Well yes if nothing is done about it for decades on end like other infringements. It can be a controlled opposition to keep the liberty minded distracted as other things go on (patriot act comes to mind) but it is still an encouraging step.

      • “I saw that and had the same thought.”

        There has to be some sort of legal strategy behind citing “intermediate scrutiny”. The leaders and attorneys for FPC aren’t a bunch of dullards.


  5. Massachusetts’ AWB would have been a better target. First they were banned, then you could have one depending on the number of “bad” features, then they were banned again, then they were overlooked if you already had one that complied with the number of bad features. They still aren’t legal, the corrupt AG just isn’t prosecuting anyone unless she sees fit to do so. Thanks, Mitt Romney.

  6. Everytime I read an article like this I want to buy a Tavor for a truck carbine. Just to piss someone off.

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