UNCONSTITUTIONAL: DC Ban on Gun Carry Overturned and Weekend Links

UNCONSTITUTIONAL: DC Ban on Gun Carry Overturned and Weekend Links

Washington DC is the only place in the country where no one is allowed to legally carry a gun outside the home – that is until today. Back in August 2009, Tom Palmer and three other District residents filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court that said the total ban on carrying firearms — open or concealed — violated their Second Amendment rights. That lawsuit was called Palmer v DC

It’s rare that these cases would be handed down over a weekend but it looks like this US District Judge took his job very seriously. With this ruling, gun carry outside the home in DC is constitutional. It also looks as though DC will have to recognize concealed carry permits from outside the area.

This, according to the decision handed down by the United States District Court of the District of Columbia in the Palmer v DC case. Emphasis is mine.

“In light of Heller, McDonald, and their progeny, there is no longer any basis on which this Court can conclude that the District of Columbia’s total ban on the public carrying of ready-to-use handguns outside the home is constitutional under any level of scrutiny. Therefore, the Court finds that the District of Columbia’s complete ban on the carrying of handguns in public is unconstitutional. Accordingly, the Court grants Plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment and enjoins Defendants from enforcing the home limitations of D.C. Code § 7-2502.02(a)(4) and enforcing D.C. Code § 22-4504(a) unless and until such time as the District of Columbia adopts a licensing mechanism consistent with constitutional standards enabling people to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms.4 Furthermore, this injunction prohibits the District from completely banning the carrying of handguns in public for self-defense by otherwise qualified non-residents based solely on the fact that they are not residents of the District.”

You can read the full opinion on Palmer v DC, here.

Incredible attorney Alan Gura, who has won many national gun rights cases including the famous Heller decision, just gave law-abiding gun owners another important court win in protecting our 2A rights. Job well-done, Sir! And kudos to a thinking judge who has actually read the Constitution and abides by it. Could someone please pay him time and a half for working weekends?

Remember: People have a right to carry a handgun for self defense, which Heller confirmed. I like what Andrew Branca at Legal Insurrection says best on this victory:

“This should, of course, be the common fate of virtually every gun law currently on the books, particularly when (as is the only proper legal course) strict scrutiny is applied to the thousands of state and Federal laws that continue to irrationally infringe our rights to keep and bear arms.”

Indeed, Andrew. And today, we win.

UPDATE: It looks like things in DC are happening with yesterday’s ruling on Palmer v DC. Check out these tweets earlier today from Emily Miller, a local DC reporter and 2A advocate. We’ll keep you posted if the situation warrants.

Our “Weekend Links” are below the fold!

Great Weekend Blog Reading Links!

Teach at Pirate’s Cove is blogging about this…“Climate Change: What Would Jesus Do?”

The Other McCain has many good blog posts up including this one by Smitty on “The Amnesty Fine Print”.

Phineas at Sister Toldjah has up this post on “Boom: #Obamacare architect upholds #Halbig decision”.

Professor Jacobson at Legal Insurrection has up this post today on “Kerry ceasefire proposal “was everything Hamas could have hoped for”.

V the K at Gay Patriot has up this blog post called “NY Times Writer Demands “Anti-LGBT Attitudes Should Be Stamped Out Ruthlessly”.

Glenn Reynolds, Instapundit, has many great posts at his blog hub from all over the blogosphere so go check them out! And you can watch Glenn’s latest InstaVision interview here. It’s with Michael Barone.

Dana at The First Street Journal has up a great post called “The left keep telling us all of the things about which we are not supposed to judge them”.

As always, Michelle Obama’s Mirror has up a great post called “Except, You Know, I Can’t Sing and You Can’t Dance”.

Jammie at Jammie Wearing Fools has up this post “IDF Source in Gaza: “I have not entered one civilian home that did not have weapons, suicide belts, or booby traps in it”.

Evil Blogger Lady has this post on “Unintended Consequences of Immigration Crisis? Greater Support for Border Security and Returning Migrant Youth to Central America”.

Donald Douglas at American Power has up this blog post on “Russian Woman Does Striptease to Prevent Her Car from Getting Towed”.

Neo at Neo-Neocon is writing about “About those Gazan tunnels…”

Uncle Jimbo at Blackfive has up this post, “Someone You Should Know- MG John Stark”.

Ann Althouse has up a number of great posts, but I like this one – “The NYT finally gets around to those statements of Jonathan Gruber and White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest cagily refrains from lying about lying”.

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air has up this post up… “Walsh: Blaming PTSD for my plagiarism was kind of a speak-o”.

and finally, Ace at AoSHQ has up this post on “Holy Mackerel: Creepy Dolls Case Solved — It Was In Fact a Well-Meaning Would-Be Santa Whose Intentions Were Misunderstood”. Read the comments. 🙂

Have a terrific weekend!

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  • Jodi says:


  • Thanks for the kind words! However, lest Professor Jacobson be held responsible for the stuff that emerges from my keyboard (not all of which is so kindly received!), I feel obliged to point out that the post cited was written by me as a guest blogger on Legal Insurrection. 🙂

    –Andrew, @LawSelfDefense

    • Kate says:

      Andrew – I’m so sorry for the mistake. It IS a great comment on the decision and I’ve corrected myself in the post. We kind of have a collective crush on the good Professor here at VG. 🙂

  • NDB says:

    I hope that this decision in favor of the 2A will make those here in CO sit up and take notice. Especially when we have a law (one of several now) on the books that isn’t ‘performing’ as expected.

    The AP – NOT usually one of those media outlets that writes with a critical bent regarding liberal policies wrote a story/analysis about the CO Background Check law that got passed last year.

    The Palmer vs DC decision, as Prof Jacobsen states, should definitely be factored into the effectiveness of any of the new CO gun laws.

    Especially when you have this:

    “A law expanding background check requirements on Colorado gun sales has been in effect for about a year, and an Associated Press analysis of state data compiled during that span shows the projected impact was vastly overstated in a key budget report.”

    read the rest here: http://www.denverpost.com/headlines/ci_26214412/colorado-gun-law-based-flawed-estimate-analysis?source=hot-topic-bar

  • BHirsh says:

    “It’s rare that these cases would be handed down over a weekend but it looks like this US District Judge took his job very seriously.”

    This sentence implies that the decision was expedient.

    It was not.

    It should have been rendered in 2009.

    That’s FIVE FRIGGIN’ YEARS ago.

    Alan Gura filed two petitions for a writ of mandamus to force this court to rule during that span. Both were ignored the appellate court.

    What’s amazing is that Scullin ruled AT ALL, and even more amazing is that he ruled CORRECTLY.

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