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Appellate Court "Temporarily" Reinstates Discretionary Concealed Carry Licensing in D.C.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Appellate Court "Temporarily" Reinstates Discretionary Concealed Carry Licensing in D.C.

The wheels of justice ground to a halt again for D.C. gun owners on Friday. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia temporarily blocked a lower court's order that had mandated the District process concealed carry applications and disregard its "good" or "proper" purpose requirement.

The lower court's order arose in the case of Wrenn v. District of Columbia, in which the judge made a preliminary finding that the "good" or "proper" purpose requirement likely offends the Second Amendment and ordered the District to stop enforcing it. 

As we have reported, the disputed provisions of D.C.'s law effectively empower the Metropolitan Police Department to deny concealed carry licenses even to applicants who meet all other qualifications, including successful background checks and completion of extensive firearm training.  In practice, the MPD denies most applications on the "good" or "proper" basis, and District officials have even acknowledged in court filings that the very purpose of the requirement is to limit the number of permits issued. 

Second Amendment advocates can take some comfort in the fact that the "administrative stay" issued by the Court of Appeals revealed no opinion on the underlying merits of the case. The Washington Post quotes the court's order as stating, "The purpose of this administrative stay is to give the court sufficient opportunity to consider the merits of the motion for stay and should not be construed in any way as a ruling on the merits of that motion." In other words, the court wanted more time to consider whether or not the law should remain in effect while the District's appeal of the lower court decision was being resolved. Thus, the court might have thought preserving the status quo was the more moderate course of action while it explored the full range of issues presented by the underlying motion. 

Whatever may have prompted the court's decision, it certainly isn't the last word in a case that has had many twists and turns. Before Wrenn was filed, the case of Palmer v. District of Columbia had determined that D.C. could not simply ban carrying in public for self-defense altogether. For at least a few days in the wake of that decision, D.C. had no authority to ban the carrying of firearms in many public areas, and reports emerged of people lawfully open carrying in the District for the first time in generations. District officials then hastily enacted a concealed carry licensing regime. Nevertheless, even after the decision in Palmer – which declared that bearing arms in public for self-defense is protected by the Second Amendment – D.C.'s antigun officials still insisted that D.C.'s police chief must have discretion over who can and cannot exercise that right. That resulted in the Wrenn lawsuit.

We can only hope at this point that D.C.'s long losing streak on Second Amendment litigation will continue. In the meantime, however, D.C.'s law-abiding residents and visitors will once again face a decisive disadvantage against the armed criminals who continue to prowl D.C.'s streets. And for that, the criminals can thank the District's antigun (although heavily guarded) powers that be.  

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Louisiana: Senate Passes Constitutional Carry - Take Action Now!

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Louisiana: Senate Passes Constitutional Carry - Take Action Now!

Today, the Senate passed Senate Bill 1, NRA backed constitutional carry legislation, on a 28-10 vote. The bill will next be considered in the House. Please contact your state representative and ask them to SUPPORT Senate Bill 1.

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Tuesday, February 20, 2024

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Hawaii Justices “Declare War” on U.S. Supreme Court, to the Cheers of Anti-Gun Media

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Tuesday, February 20, 2024

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In Hawaii, a man who was peacefully carrying a pistol for his own self-protection while on a nature hike was arrested and subject to felony prosecution under state laws that generally confine the possession of ...

Minnesota: "Assault Weapons" Ban Referred to the Committee on Public Safety Finance and Policy

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

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On Monday, House File 3570 was referred to the House Committee on Public Safety Finance and Policy and would ban so called “assault weapons” by expanding upon an existing statute used to define these firearms. The bill ...

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Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Colorado: Semi-Auto Ban Introduced in General Assembly

Anti-Gun extremist State Reps. Tim Hernandez (D-04) and Elisabeth Epps (D-06) introduced House Bill 24-1292, a bill banning the manufacturing, importing, purchasing, selling, offering to sell, or transferring ownership of so called “assault weapons”. 

South Carolina: Permitless Carry Passes the Senate, Waiting on Concurrence by the House

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

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Last week, South Carolina moved one step closer to becoming the 28th state to enact Permitless/Constitutional Carry! This effort has been years in the making, clearing a major hurdle by passing the Senate, which has been ...

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Friday, February 23, 2024

Louisiana: House Committee to Hear Constitutional Carry Monday - Take Action Now!

Monday, February 26, at 10:00 AM, the House Administration of Criminal Justice Committee will hear Senate Bill 1, the NRA-backed constitutional carry legislation. SB 1 was passed by the Senate earlier this week with overwhelming support. Please contact committee members ...

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Friday, February 23, 2024

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Contact Governor Youngkin today and urge his veto!  Anti-gun extremists in the Virginia General Assembly have made diminishing your Second Amendment Rights a top priority this legislative session. This week a slew of gun control ...

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Wednesday, February 21, 2024

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.