While Congress debated health care legislation, which blew up in Republicans’ faces last night, there was something to be happy about concerning constitutional rights. Granted, it’s not nearly on the level as the process that would have taken us closer to repeal of Obamacare, which failed last night—but the D.C. Court of Appeals struck down its “good reason” for concealed carry permit Tuesday. The statute, which has been a point of contention in the Second Amendment debate, is one common with anti-gun bastions of the country. It states that in order for a law-abiding citizen to obtain a concealed carry permit, they must show a good reason (i.e. death threats) in order to exercise their gun rights outside of the home. It was a two-to-one decision (via WaPo):
In a 2-to-1 decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said the District’s system, which requires a “good reason” to obtain a permit, is akin to an outright ban in violation of the Second Amendment.
“The good-reason law is necessarily a total ban on most D.C. residents’ right to carry a gun in the face of ordinary self-defense needs,” wrote Judge Thomas B. Griffith, who was joined by Judge Stephen F. Williams.
“Bans on the ability of most citizens to exercise an enumerated right would have to flunk any judicial test.”
The court’s rejection of the District’s permitting system is the latest legal blow for city officials who have been forced to rewrite gun-control regulations ever since the Supreme Court in 2008 used a D.C. case to declare a Second Amendment right to gun ownership. The ruling follows proposals from Republican members of Congress that would require the District to honor concealed-carry permits from other states in the wake of a June shooting at a GOP congressional baseball practice.
D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine said his office is considering whether to ask the full D.C. Circuit to review Tuesday’s decision by a three-judge panel and is committed to “fighting for common-sense gun rules.”
The ruling from the three-judge panel gives city officials 30 days to decide whether to appeal for review by a full complement of D.C. Circuit judges. If the court does not agree to revisit the case, the order to permanently block enforcement of the “good reason” requirement would take effect seven days later.
Last April, another federal judge ruled that the “good reason” provision was likely unconstitutional.