God bless America and Oregon Democratic Representative Peter DeFazio--we've got a show of some sanity and courage from Congress, which is weighing in on the District of Columbia vs. Heller case, which is scheduled for arguments on March 18.
Peter DeFazio joined a bipartisan majority of both houses of Congress that filed an Amicus Brief urging the Supreme Court to overturn the blatantly unconstitutional D.C. gun ban:
As reported in today's Washington Post:
"Majority of Hill Stands Against D.C. Gun Ban"
"A majority of the Senate and more than half of the members of the House will file a brief today urging the Supreme Court to uphold a ruling that the District's handgun ban violates the Second Amendment. . . Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Tex.), who led the effort to file the friend-of-the-court brief, said her staff could not find another instance in which such a large portion of Congress had taken a position on an issue before the court . . . Hutchison and Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), who spoke at a Heritage Foundation said the court could find D.C.'s law unconstitutional without another trip through the courts and without endangering Congress's ability to pass other gun control legislation, such as banning assault weapons."
Way to go Tester! This proves the importance of the U.S. Senate races in 2008 and the need for us to back our pro-2nd Amendment Democratic candidates for Congress.
I should also note (as mentioned in the article) that the Bush administration is SUPPORTING THE DISTRICT in its effort to maintain bans on personal or individual ownership of firearms (another reason Bush sucks, as if we needed one.)
Here's a portion of the Amicus Brief worth highlighting:
"IV. A HANDGUN BAN IS UNREASONABLE ON ITS FACE, RENDERING A REMAND FOR FURTHER PROCEEDINGS UNNECESSARY
Congress has historically viewed the Second Amendment as protecting from infringement the right of the people at large to keep and bear arms. It has further regarded ordinary, commonly-possessed rifles, handguns, and shotguns to be constitutionally protected arms. It has also passed regulations for engaging in firearms businesses and to require background checks on firearm transferees, and has restricted certain dangerous categories of persons from possession of firearms.99 None of these laws is called into question by the lower court’s limited holding.
The standard for whether a right is “fundamental” is whether it is “explicitly or implicitly protected by the Constitution, thereby requiring strict judicial scrutiny.” San Antonio Independent School Dist. v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 1, 17 (1973). The right of the people to keep arms is obviously such a right. Yet even if this Court applied a lower “reasonableness” test
as the standard of review, the District’s handgun ban is unreasonable on its face. The lower court’s categorical approach in holding a prohibition on handguns to be unconstitutional per se was correct."
There it is; hard to be any clearer than that. Let's hope SCOTUS sees the light.
Here's the list of members of the House and Senate cosigning the amicus brief. Remember to send Peter DeFazio your warmest regards and contributions!