« An amusing spat in the Third Circuit over a not-very-brief sentencing brief | Main | Interesting research on sex offender registration and home sales »

July 15, 2010

Notable press account of Skoein Second Amendment ruling with partisan perspectives

The AP has this notable new piece, headlined "Court's decision offers some clarity on gun laws," discussing the Seventh Circuit significant Second Amendment ruling in Skoien from earlier this week.  Here are some highlights:

A federal appeals court upheld a ban on gun possession for a domestic violence offender in a ruling that several anti-violence advocates applauded Wednesday for providing some clarity after the U.S. Supreme Court's recent landmark decision on gun restrictions....

"Even with the new definition of the Second Amendment, it (Tuesday's ruling) shows that you can still have reasonable gun restrictions," said Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence said of the appellate ruling. "This case really reaffirms that you can have limits."

But Herbert Titus, an attorney for the Virginia-based Gun Owners of America, which filed an amicus brief for the Wisconsin man called the decision outrageous. He said the Supreme Court's ruling put the Second Amendment on par with the First Amendment, which can't be taken from someone.

"No one has said you lose your First Amendment rights if you violate some law," he said. "Why should we assume just because you violated some law, the government can take away your Second Amendment rights?"

The Wisconsin case involved Steven Skoien who was convicted twice of misdemeanor domestic violence involving two different women. While on probation, the Janesville, Wis., man was arrested in 2007 for gun possession, pleaded guilty the following year and was sentenced to two years in prison....

Some experts said Tuesday's ruling at least provided some clarity for what gun restrictions might be acceptable -- if only for narrowly defined terms. "This decision clarifies for the moment that people who are situated in that same situation as the plaintiff don't have an immediate Second Amendment claim," said Nicholas Johnson, professor at Fordham University School of Law in New York.

But the ruling left much in doubt, including whether a person convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence could earn back the right to carry guns. "There will be time to consider that subject when it arises," Easterbrook wrote in his opinion.

I am pleased to see that a gun-rights group like Gun Owners of America is not backing away from its forceful views on constitutional gun rights in a case like this.  I wonder if other like-minded groups, and especially the National Rifle Association, will express a similar view. 

Especially if Steven Skoien seek Supreme Court review of his loss in the Seventh Circuit, which I expect he will, the amicus support of groups like Gun Owners of America and the NRA could play a critical role in whether the Justices feel a need to take up this issue now or only after they have deal with other post-Heller issues.

A few related Second Amendment posts on Skoien and related issues:

July 15, 2010 at 12:48 PM | Permalink

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451574769e20133f24ed78c970b

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Notable press account of Skoein Second Amendment ruling with partisan perspectives:

Comments

"people who are situated in that same situation as the plaintiff"

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the plaintiff in this case is the United States.

Posted by: DEJ | Jul 15, 2010 5:07:33 PM

"The Wisconsin case involved Steven Skoien who was convicted twice of misdemeanor domestic violence involving two different women. While on probation, the Janesville, Wis., man was arrested in 2007 for gun possession, pleaded guilty the following year and was sentenced to two years in prison...."

These facts make this a very easy case.

Posted by: ohwilleke | Jul 15, 2010 9:36:13 PM

I Was convicted of a domestic violence 11 years ago for grabbing my ex's arm and telling her to let me out of her vehicle. I regret that this ever took place and I learned a big life lesson but should I lose the right to bare arms for life because of this? I have held down the same job for 9 years now as well as graduating from college with a B.S degree in business management. I have done all that I possibly can to prove that I am a productive member of sociaty. About 2 years ago I applied to become a highway patrol officer and passed all of the tests for a academy appointment, including a lie detector and a QAP which entails explaining your entire past to panel members. I have the ok from a law enforcement agency but I can go no further because of this ban that I had no clue about when I pled no contest to the crime 11 years ago. I have expunged my record per 1203.4, 12021.c, as well as petitioned the court for a Corum Nobis. When petitioning the court I had the backing of my ex whom I was with when I was charged with the DV as well my background officer, both support me getting my rights back. The petition was denied based on my rights should be restored to me via my expungement as well as state law, California bans people for 10 years for mistomeanor DV convictions. I have completely exhausted every avenue exept for a pardon and I am going to send out that paperwork shortly. So you can see how impossible it is to redeem oneself after such a minor offense. And just to clarify how easy it is to lose your rights forever all one has to do is throw a wad of paper at yor domestic partner or if you spank your child and the police are called out you are looking at a D V charge. If the readers of this think that I am blowing hot air then just research this subject a little further and you will see many cases of very minor offenses that has resulted in a lifetime ban of a fundemental right. I am not saying
everyone deserves to have thier gun rights restored but there should be a program in place to determine if a person has demostrated that he/she deserves a second chance. And one last thing before I stop ranting, my home was broken into two times last year and I can't even get a sling shot to protect my wife and baby girl if someone happens to break in to our house when we are home. It is a very helpless feeling knowing that you and your family are at the mercy of criminals. If there are any attorneys that might be willing to help me with my case please email me back. Thanks, Chris

Posted by: Chris | Jul 18, 2010 11:32:47 PM

People arguing in favor of the current federal gun control ploy -namely GCA68- are forgetting the fact that the federal government is told that it may not infringe on the right of the people to keep and bear arms.This means legislating any form of 'control' or 'reasonable regulation' whatsoever.

GCA68 and other federal legislation,which directly contradicts the second amendment by enacting laws that broadly gives federal government authority where it is specifically not entitled to it,are not legal and are constitutionally illegitimate.
Allowing the federal government to continue to trample rights with authority it does not legally possess will not solve crime.

Posted by: J | Jul 20, 2010 8:19:35 PM

Post a comment

In the body of your email, please indicate if you are a professor, student, prosecutor, defense attorney, etc. so I can gain a sense of who is reading my blog. Thank you, DAB