More on the Cook County AWB Decision

This is actually a more significant victory than I originally had reported. Usually I take my time on these things, but yesterday was insane. I am in the process of refinancing my mortgage, which will reduce my monthly payment and help me pay off the house a few years sooner. I figured as long as Uncle Sugar is running the printing presses flat out I might as well cash in.

But either way, there’s been better coverage of it. Clayton notes that it’s a pretty significant victory that the Illinois Supreme Court essentially remanded for consideration as to whether these rifles were commonly used. The answer to that is yes. Even in Heller II, the two judge majority on the three judge panel ruled that they were in common use, just that they were unprotected regardless.

After reading the opinion, I believe the court’s dismissal on vagueness grounds was a bit poorly reasoned. I think there’s a good case to be made that many assault weapons bans are, in fact, vague, because they ban features that are not well defined. That’s proven itself again and again in California, and I just don’t think when you’re dealing with a protected activity, like owning firearms, that the Courts ought to tolerate this kind of vagueness.

Dave Hardy notes a few interesting things on the case as well, and we’re certainly glad he’s out of the hospital.

4 thoughts on “More on the Cook County AWB Decision”

  1. Note that there are a lot of differences between a facial vagueness challenge, which this one is, and an as applied one, which is what’s happening in California. In this case there is only the law. In California we have evidence of how no one can define these terms in a consistent manner.


    1. Exactly. The vagueness challenge here was premature because there was no evidence that the law has ever been used to prosecute anyone with. Even when there is a conviction or a prosecution, vagueness is exceedingly hard to get. See Commonwealth v. Jasmin, 487 NE 2d 1383 – Mass (1986) for how vagueness challenges typically go.

      The cook county law is also far clearer to implement than CA’s. CA did somersaults to allow guns that should have otherwise been banned if the moon bats had their way which increased the complexity significantly. All of that was likely in order to keep “sportsman” happy.

      Letting the Cook County case be solely judges on the 2A merits is a great result and there is a really good chance this will get ruled unconstitutional the next time it comes up. I just hope stronger evidence about the lawfulness of high cap mags is introduced.

  2. Best of luck on refinancing….

    I just refinanced through my credit union. 3.125% on 15 year mortgage and $2,500 closing cost credit. So there are some REALLY good deals out there.

    That was with NavyFederal. I am not sure any place would quite match that, but I’ve seen other credit unions in the 4% range.

    If you bought your house recently, you might be able to use the same “settlement company”. This is what we did, it was less than 2 years ago that we bought our house with a FHA 203K rehab loan.

    So by using the same settlement company, the cost was greatly reduced. They’re able to just do a title insurance update which was several hundred dollars as opposed to thousand+.

  3. I’m given to understand that the reason that NJ now has a “evil features” list as their de facto AWB is becuase the original “named weapons or substantially similar” was essentially struck for vagueness and the NJAG’s office pulled the features list from their fundamentals.

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