DC v. Heller Petition

It seems to be the buzz on the blogosphere from people who are in the know is that the cert. petition in DC v. Heller is rather unusual, in that it discusses at length the merits of The Districts position, rather than discussing why it’s important for the Supreme Court to hear the case.

I almost have to wonder if DC doesn’t want the Supreme Court to actually hear the case.   For political reasons, Fenty had to file for cert., because he has to be seen as standing up for his city’s position on their gun ban.  But you can bet the anti-gun groups don’t want to cast this die.   If Fenty appealed with a crappy petition, it would get him off the hook, he did everything he had, after all, but the anti-gun movement as a whole wouldn’t risk putting their entire future in jeopardy by having to go before The Court, and quite possibly losing.

I have to wonder.

7 thoughts on “DC v. Heller Petition”

  1. I had the same thought. I mean really, if a bunch of knuckle-draggers like us can shred his cert. like we did, SCOTUS would look at it like it was written in crayon.

    But what are the effects if they don’t accept it? Is the DC ban overturned or not? Are there enough loopholes that they can still effectively keep handguns banned by making it so difficult no-one could get one?

    If it is tight enough to allow ownership, can the Anti’s afford NOT to roll the dice?

  2. I’m glad I’m not the only one thinking Fenty’s trying to lose.

    I suspect part of the reason he dragged his feet preparing the petition is that he and the D.C. legal team needed the time to frame up new laws that would plausibly slide by the D.C. Circuit decision, without significantly increasing his subjects’ ability to defend themselves.

    Now, when SCOTUS rejects the petition, he’ll be spring-loaded with the new laws, so they can go into effect almost immediately, without providing a significant window for Washingtonians to arm themselves.

    Even if the new laws can’t pass muster, they will at least remain in effect through another court cycle.

    If this speculation is anywhere near the mark, it strongly suggests that Fenty et al know that if SCOTUS even tries to look at the 2nd half-way honestly, that’s it for gun control. Much better to keep the ball in play, bouncing bad law after bad law through the courts.

  3. And just think, if they deny cert., then the pro-gunnies can pull a Miller on the anti-gunners and note that what the court didn’t say must mean it meant this other thing. I.e., denying cert is an endorsement of the individual rights view. I mean, if we’re going to be dishonest, intellectual hacks like our opposition.

  4. No, you have plenty of company. I won’t even argue with that position, but this has kind of been forced on us by circumstance. Given that, Heller is a great case, well put together, and the attorneys involved seemed to have a clue. Better to go forward with a case we think we have a shot at winning than a case with criminal defendants and less than talented attorneys.

    Unfortunately, the train has already left the station.

  5. So am I the only gun guy who thinks maybe pushing this issue in court might not be a good idea?

    Comment by rightwingprof

    I think the case is strong, but I am not comfortable trusting such an important decision to the same basic body that gave us Kelo v. New London. I fear that strict interpretation of the constitution is not among their virtues.

  6. This is as good a case for the 2nd as we have had to date. Not a sawed-off shotgun case. The appeals court overturned the ban, but left it in place while the Supreme Court was asked to grant cert. The natural right to self-defense preceded the U.S. Constitution and all the 50 state constitutions. D.C.’s argument that they have rifles and shotguns is ridiculous. Can you see a 70-80 year old D.C. resident wielding a heavy shotgun or rifle for defense in their home? Guess they can take off the lock and find the bullets while the bad guys are kicking in the door. It is criminal to ever deny self-defense in one’s home or car. These people who wrote this law were stupid and not benefited by 30 years of experience and rising violent crime.

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