FPC, SAF, NJ2AS File New Lawsuit Challenging New Jersey Handgun Carry Ban

New Jersey Phil Murphy gun stores

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

From the Firearms Policy Coalition:

Today, Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC),  Second Amendment Foundation (SAF), and New Jersey Second Amendment Society (NJ2AS) announced the filing of a new federal lawsuit challenging the State of New Jersey’s laws that prevent individuals from carrying a loaded handgun outside of the home for self-defense. This new lawsuit challenges New Jersey’s criminal statutory scheme as it relates to carrying loaded, operable handguns outside of the home without a permit as well as the State’s regulatory scheme as it relates to applications for and issuance of carry permits. The case, Bennett v. Davis, can be viewed at FPCLegal.org.

New Jersey law makes it a crime for a law-abiding individual to carry a loaded handgun outside of the home unless they have been issued a permit to carry a handgun, thus denying them their right to bear arms. Worse, State law prevents them from obtaining such a permit because of further unconstitutional requirements, such as the demonstration of “justifiable need”, among others.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has previously said that “private citizens should not be able to carry weapons based on mere generalized fear.” However, say the plaintiffs, the Supreme Court’s precedents take that policy choice off the table, and the Constitution itself provides the only justification necessary for law-abiding adults to exercise their fundamental, individual right to bear arms.

“This case is fundamentally a simple but important one,” said attorney for the plaintiffs, Raymond DiGuiseppe. “In New Jersey today, the right to carry loaded handguns in public for all lawful purposes, including self defense, is completely denied to law-abiding people, like and including our clients. But the U.S. Supreme Court has held that such bans are categorically unconstitutional. We look forward to vindicating the rights of our clients and forcing New Jersey to respect the Constitution.”

“The right to keep and bear arms is not limited to the home. In Heller, the Supreme Court held that to ‘bear’ arms means to ‘carry’ them for ‘a particular purpose—confrontation.’ And even the late Justice Ginsburg wrote that bearing arms means to ‘wear, bear, or carry . . . upon the person or in the clothing or in a pocket, for the purpose . . . of being armed and ready for offensive or defensive action in a case of conflict with another person.’ But the State of New Jersey has totally banned the average law-abiding citizen from exercising their rights. That is unconstitutional and unacceptable,” explained attorney Adam Kraut, FPC’s Director of Legal Strategy.

“New Jersey’s draconian prohibition on the right to protect yourself with a firearm, the same way politicians and judges protect themselves, has endangered lives and created countless victims. New Jersey residents want nothing more than to protect themselves and their loved ones, as they are entitled to. We are confident the courts will agree and proud to join forces with the nation’s leading organizations, the Second Amendment Foundation and Firearm Policy Coalition, to help take this battle to the highest court,” commented Alexander Roubian, president of NJ2AS.

“The right to bear arms must be available to all citizens, not just a privileged few,” remarked SAF Founder and Executive Vice President, Alan Gottlieb. “Like other rights protected by the Constitution, that right is not limited to the confines of one’s home. Ever since the SAF victory in McDonald v. City of Chicago ten years ago, the Second Amendment absolutely applies in New Jersey. We will continue to sue whoever we need to as we restore the Second Amendment one lawsuit at a time.”

“The people of New Jersey have been oppressed by an abusive, authoritarian government for far too long, and we intend to remedy that beginning today,” said FPC President Brandon Combs. “Our nation fought the Revolutionary War to forcefully reject the Crown’s heavy-handed rule and denial of fundamental liberties, including the right to bear arms, but the State has regressively called back to that tyranny as inspiration for its current policies. Governor Murphy, Attorney General Grewal, and other anti-rights government officials may not like that people have the right to carry loaded guns in public, but their opinion doesn’t trump the Constitution. It’s time to bring freedom back home to the Garden State.”

The plaintiffs, including two individuals, FPC, SAF, and NJ2AS, are represented by attorneys David Jensen, DiGuiseppe, and Kraut.


The Bennett case is another important lawsuit filed as part of FPC’s comprehensive strategy to defend freedom, advance individual liberty, and restore the Constitution and its guarantees for individuals throughout the United States.

Individuals who wish to support the lawsuit can do so at JoinFPC.org and www.firearmspolicy.org/bennett.


comments

  1. avatar Sam I Am says:

    Likely the SC will dodge this one; it is too broad and specific at the same time. At the core is “Shall not be infringed”. That is a bridge too far for the SC.

    1. avatar FedUp says:

      It’s not a bridge too far for Thomas, C-B, or probably Kavanaugh. Who’s the final vote to take on the case?

      1. avatar Sam I Am says:

        “It’s not a bridge too far for Thomas, C-B, or probably Kavanaugh. Who’s the final vote to take on the case?”

        Thomas is interested in settling the question of whether the Second Amendment is a second-class right. That is, does the Second require strict scrutiny, or not. Scrutiny level is a far cry from RTKBA and “shall not be infinged”. The case at hand turns on whether “permits” are unconstitutional.

        Big diff between resolving the “scrutiny” issue, and preventing “reasonable restrictions”. If “permits” are overturned, then BGCs can be argued as essentially a permitting activity. “Strick scrutiny” allows for “reasonable restrictions” to be justified.

        1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

          “The case at hand turns on whether “permits” are unconstitutional.”

          OK, if you are not a legally-prohibited person, the state must issue you a permit. Over three-fifths of the states do that already, and the streets are not rivers running with blood.

          Problem solved… 🙂

        2. avatar Sam I Am says:

          “OK, if you are not a legally-prohibited person, the state must issue you a permit. Over three-fifths of the states do that already, and the streets are not rivers running with blood.
          Problem solved…”

          Not certain of the connecting thread here, but I will pick up where I think you are pointing.

          The fatal logic in “shall issue” is the idea that any person protected by the US constitution must prove they are not a criminal, or not subject to any other restriction. This concept strikes at the heart of “innocent until proven guilty.” Which other provision of the constitution requires proof of innocence prior to availing oneself of constitutional protection?

          The Second Amendment books no exception to its declaration, which means even convicted criminals (or persons amidst a criminal act) have their RTKBA protected by the Second Amendment. But on its face, you appear to be posing the principle that so long as one can prove their innocence, and the state/locality is of “shall issue” construct, a government permit to keep and bear arms is a permissible government abrogation of a constitutionally protected natural, human and civil right. Under the principle of ensuring public safety, a permit can be required for the exercise of any protected right under the constitution.

          All proposed and existing restrictions on gun possession are encapsulated by the phrase “common sense”. At that point, the issue is not law, or the constitution, but merely a war of preference regarding who is exempt from the protection of the Second Amendment.

  2. avatar I Haz A Question says:

    My NRA membership expired over two years ago, yet two days ago I received yet another “please come back” mailer from them. I’ve been financially donating to CRPA (an NRA affiliate, but at least they champion actual court cases here in CA), but am now receiving so many fundraiser mailers from them I now just tear them in half and throw them away without reading them. I have a donation schedule and will be sending out the checks in their due course throughout the year. I’m not really too appreciative of the constant snail mail begging me for more. Same with FPC. I’m glad for their efforts and realize the need to give money so they can act on our behalf (which is sorely needed), but I just wish these organizations would balance their mailer and email notices and allow some time to elapse between them. It gets tiring receiving weekly “the sky is falling! send more money!” notices.

    1. avatar Darkman says:

      I’m still an NRA member because I purchased a Life Time membership decades ago, I haven’t given any money in years due to their Negotiate Rights Away activities. The last time they sent me a fund raising letter I returned it with the message: No Donations Until Wayne La Pierre and the entire board resign and agree to never serve again (stated here in a more polite terminology). That was a couple of years ago and I haven’t heard from them since other than the First Freedom magazine I receive. I now donate to GOA, Iowa Firearms Coalition and Iowa Gun Owners.

      1. avatar Debbie W. says:

        It’s new jersey…A Jim Crow Gun Control democRat Hole.

        1. avatar Darkman says:

          That’s why #VotesMatter. We’ve accomplished more in the battle for 2A rights in Iowa by voting Pro 2A candidates into office than All the National Org. combined. Washington politicians who can hide inside the beltway can’t be trusted as much as politicians who have to live in the communities they represent.

      2. avatar Craig in IA says:

        “I now donate to GOA, Iowa Firearms Coalition and Iowa Gun Owners.”

        Iowa Firearms Coalition is the IA NRA State Affiliate and most of their statehouse activity is generated by the NRA. When IFC has acted alone they let “small” things slip, like the IA Constitutional Amendment they worked to pass a couple years back, setting the whole thing back 3 more years. They can blame Sec of State Pate for this but it was primarily IFC’s lack of experience that was the true cause. The money you send IFC may be used for activities within Iowa but have zero bearing on things like this article you are posting on.

        GOA, while speaking volumes about being no-compromise and acting tough (appealing to a lot of uniformed gun people) has never run a bill from start to signing in any statehouse that I am aware of, let alone at the national level. They have no internal network to do so. If I’m wrong and GOA can point to any national or state law or regulation they have made better or prevented from passing ON THEIR OWN, please post the list here.

        Iowa Gun Owners exists primarily to pay the general bills for Aaron Dorr and his band of tards. Aaron isn’t even a registered lobbyist in Iowa and the other “Gun Owners” groups run around the country by his family are about the same. In Iowa, Aaron sends around “the sky is falling” emails concerning small town proposals that never will be enacted due to Iowa’s Preemption Law, and he know it. Talk about fundraising…

        WLP may retire soon but to think the entire BOD will leave is idiotic at best- who do you think would then run the organization? You? The NRA bashers around here? It’s not going to happen that way and if it did, your 2A rights would evaporate within months, since none of the other groups would have the connections, money or ability to fill the void.

        If I may say, I’ve had some good one-on-one conversations with “new” NRA ILA Director Jason Ouimet and I believe he is very centered and working exactly in the right direction. It’s too bad many of the “real gun people” around here will never do likewise, or even give him a chance, not that it will have much bearing on NRA’s future. At least I can say that I’ve met and spoken directly with him, as well as just about every Past President and many of the Board members over the past 25 years or so- how many bashers around here are merely parroting the “Hands Up- Don’t Shoot!” here-say theme and mentality often postitioned here, at Ammoland and other blogs?

  3. avatar Darkman says:

    It will take more than a lawsuit and a court decision to stop Tyrants like Murphy (NJ) Cuomo(NY), WHitler(MI, Newsome(CA),Prickzer(ILL) and the rest of Bloomberg’s henchmen. As long as they are allowed fresh air they will be a threat.

    1. avatar FedUp says:

      No kidding. Whitless has had her ass handed to her by the state Supreme Court, so she said she’d start obeying the court in a month. Court said “you will quit violating the law TODAY”. Then four weeks later, she orders restaurants to keep a log of customer names and times of attendance.

      What part of NO does she not understand? The same part that 98% of the federal judiciary doesn’t understand after Heller and McDonald?

  4. When are these politicians going to wake up and
    see that law-abiding citizens are not the ones that
    commit the firearm-related crimes. The crimes
    are all committed by the owners of illegal guns.

    1. avatar TommyGNR says:

      They already know that. They created the laws to protect the criminals who line their pockets. Criminals prefer their victims unarmed.

      1. avatar Anon says:

        Yes and especially in NJ they know honest citizens are unarmed and sitting ducks.

      2. avatar rt66paul says:

        The criminals here are the politicians. They do not want anyone who might have a different view than they do to have firearms. If they can take the good people’s guns, then we are at the mercy of the overlords – maybe, if we are good and vote as they like, they will allow LE to come and write up what happened when the street rats pull a gun and robbed us.

    2. avatar The Crimson Pirate says:

      They don’t give a rats ass about crime. It’s about power. These are the same idiots that let criminals out of prison this year while putting everyone else under house arrest. These are the same politicians that forced businesses to close or face fines and arrest but allowed black looters murder to burn and loot businesses. These are the same politicians that have their state [police protect them but will prosecute you if you defend yourself.

      They know exactly what they are doing and crime is on their side.

  5. avatar Debbie W. says:

    TRUMP/PENCE 2020.

  6. avatar DamnYankee says:

    FPC: Check
    SAF: Check
    NJ2AS: Check

    NRA: *crickets* *elbows Wayne in the ribs* “Send us money, I need a new suit. We might take credit depending on the outcome.”

  7. avatar Egan Banana says:

    It is time to protect the 2A. New York State and New York City completely violate the Constitution. To apply for a firearm license, a lot of documents are required, You also need 2-3 letters of recommendation with professional titles, Why is this necessary?
    The 2A Constitution gives me rights. Do I still need the consent of others to exercise?

    1. avatar Darkman says:

      A Citizenry that fears the consequences of Fighting for their Rights/Freedoms…More than they Fear the Loss of those Freedoms/Rights…Have become Subjects and Allowed Tyranny to Prevail. Fear is a response to Tyranny…Courage is an act to Destroy it. Keep Your Powder Dry.

    2. avatar Another Ed says:

      “The 2A Constitution gives me rights. Do I still need the consent of others to exercise?”

      No, the Second Amendment defines a right that government shall not infringe. We already had the right, but what we do not have are governments that do not infringe.

  8. I need a lawsuit like this for New York. hopefully this suit will go to a circut court that includes NY. and then we can be somewhat free.

    1. avatar Mike says:

      They just filed one in New York yesterday.

  9. avatar anon says:

    And NJ first to sign the BILL of RiGHTS! And they don’t allow the second amendment. Or parts of the first either. Murphy did state knowledge of the Bill of Rights was above his pay grade though. Right on Tucker Carlson. Somehow Murphy with all NJ draconian corona virus orders and thousands of nursing home deaths gets out of the Dem Gov list when being made note of. PA CA NC NY MI always mentioned this one never I wonder why not??

  10. avatar Ralph says:

    FPC, SAF, NJ2AS File New Lawsuit Challenging New Jersey Handgun Carry Ban

    Good luck with that in the Dickstrict of New Jersey and the Turd Circuit, where the Second Amendment goes to die.

  11. avatar Danny Phillips says:

    All of these DemocRats need to be arrested and hung for treason. At least here in AZ we’re still free. They are obviously trying to deprive all of us our rights.

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