Laws banning people from domestic violence from ordering firearms are unconstitutional, the court says


A federal law that bans people experiencing domestic violence from owning guns is unconstitutional, a conservative appeals court ruled Thursday.

decision is the latest important decision lifting gun restrictions after the Supreme Court’s decision Extending Second Amendment rights last year in the decision of the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen.

U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals says federal law targeting those who allegedly pose a threat of domestic violence cannot stand According to Bruen’s test, states that gun laws must have historical similarities with gun regulations at the time of the Constitution’s drafting.

“Through that lens, we conclude that (the law) banning gun ownership is an ‘exception’ that our ancestors would never have accepted,” 5th Circuit said.

The Justice Department signaled Thursday night that it plans to appeal the ruling. Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement that Congress defined the legislation “nearly 30 years ago.”

“Whether analyzed through the lens of Supreme Court precedent or of Second Amendment text, history, and tradition, that statute is constitutional. Accordingly, the Department will seek further review of the Fifth Circuit’s conflicting decision,” he said.

The Justice Department did not specify the next step in requesting a review of the ruling, which could include asking the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals for an immediate review by all judges in the court, or requesting an immediate review. request the Supreme Court of the United States to hold an ad hoc hearing. Stunning.

The court opinion was written by Judge Cory Todd Wilson, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump. He was joined by Judge Edith Jones, Reagan’s appointee, and Judge James Ho, another Trump appointee, who also wrote a concurrence.

The 5th Circuit panel was not convinced by historical parallels made by the US Department of Justice, which is defending the conviction of a person who owned a gun while under a domestic violence restraining order. was imposed after he was accused of assaulting his former lover. -girlfriend. The Justice Department argues that domestic violence laws are similar to 17th- and 18th-century regulations aimed at disarming “dangerous” people.

“The purpose of these ‘dangerous’ laws is to protect political and social order, not to protect an identified person from a specific threat posed by another person,” the 5th view. Circuit said. “Therefore, the disarming laws of the ‘dangerous’ classes are not ‘relatively similar'” to “play the same role in history.”

A spokesman for the Justice Department did not immediately respond to CNN’s questions. If the 5th Circuit ruling is appealed, it could set off another gun rights fight in the Supreme Court.

Steve Vladeck, a CNN Supreme Court analyst and professor at the University of Texas School of Law, said clarity from the court was needed.

“One of two things is true: This kind of blind, rigid, context-free and common-sense historical review is exactly what the Supreme Court intended in its landmark June decision. last at Bruen, or it wasn’t,” Vladeck said.

Either way, the judges on the Bruen majority side have to make it clear what they mean – and either endorse or reject the rather frightening idea that individuals under the injunction are involved in active domestic violence. still have a constitutional right to own a gun,” he added.

The defendant challenging his sentence, Zackey Rahimi, had lost in an earlier round before Round 5, before the Supreme Court handed down Bruen’s ruling last year. The earlier Round 5 opinion was withdrawn after Bruen’s decision was made, and the appeals court made another round of summaries directed at the new test.

This story has been updated with additional developments.


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