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It’s All Been Done

Dave Hardy tell us the City of Philadelphia wants to sue the state over gun control:

City Councilman Darrell L. Clarke said last night that the city plans to file a lawsuit today in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court alleging that the General Assembly has failed in its duty to protect the residents of the city.

“It is becoming increasingly clear to me that the General Assembly is unwilling or unable to act,” Clarke said in a telephone interview last night. “We have no choice but to go to court.”

This is a publicity stunt.  A few weeks ago I mentioned the case of Oritz vs. Commonwealth, which upheld the statewide preemption.  The city has sued the state several times over gun laws, and has lost every single time.  It’s well established that the legislature has the sole power to regulate firearms in the commonwealth.  The idea of suing the legislature for not passing laws is just insanity.

In addition to authorizing the suit today, Council intends to approve eight gun-control measures that have been languishing in Council for more than a year, Clarke said.

Among other things, the bills call for limiting handgun purchases to one a month, and for owners to report any guns that are lost or stolen, Clark said.

David Kairys, a professor at the Beasley School of Law at Temple University, said that the laws Council is expected to enact today should be valid because of the city’s Home Rule Charter. But the charter’s power is diminishing, he said.

“The legislature and the Supreme Court have so undercut it that it’s hard to say we have home rule anymore,” said Kairys, who in the 1990s led the city’s legal team in an unsuccessful court challenge against handgun manufacturers.

Try to enforce any of these, I can promise the city a giant lawsuit that WILL have merit in court.  No gun control law passed by the city is valid law in Pennsylvania, so attempting to enforce it will amount to an unlawful arrest.  I would like to see the state Attorney General remind the city that it is illegal for them to do this.

We’ve been down this road so many times with the city.  More on this issue later.

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  1. Snowflakes in Hell » Philadelphia Gun Bills - [...] In my last post, I mentioned the Philadelphia City Council was preparing to defy the Commonwealth’s preemption laws and…
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