Lawful Commerce in Arms - Judge Rules Unconstitutional

Discussion in 'National Laws, Bills and Politics' started by Malum Prohibitum, Oct 27, 2006.

  1. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    An Indiana county level judge has ruled that the federal law to bar frivolous lawsuits is unconstitutional for denying the city of Gary, Indiana due process (apparently access to courts) and violating hte separation of powers doctrine. This lawsuit is brought by the Brady Center!

    News Story
     
  2. kkennett

    kkennett New Member

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    At least for the gun makers, this seems unlikely to stand up on appeal. Probably an interlocutory one before the trial even goes. Dealers, I don't know.
     

  3. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    Three Questions

    1-- What was the basis for Congress passing a law against people suing the gun industry? Is this "interstate commerce," or ensuring the viability of a key industry that is part of national defense? Is it based on Congress' power to create, and set rules for, the federal courts?

    2-- Where does Congress get the power to say what kind of torts case is meritorious enough to be heard in State court, alleging a violation of a State-established "duty of care"?

    3-- How would we, the NRA gun-rights crowd, react if the gun-grabbers got Congess to pass a law denying access to the courts for any plaintiff alleging that he disarmed himself to comply with a business' "no weapons on premises" policy and was then attacked and injured by a criminal under circumstances that he might have successfully defended himself had be remained armed, and thus the business is now liable?

    What arguments would WE make if Congress decided to declare that in every State in the USA, and in every court of record in every jurisdiction, there is a new rule of law : "Imprudent Disarmament is not a viable cause of action in tort. Businesses may order and enforce the disarmament of their employees, customers, and vendors without owing to those disarmed people any extra duty of care to provide for their security."


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  4. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Re: Three Questions

    What is it that makes you think this would survive a motion to dismiss even now?
     
  5. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

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    From what I remember it is Interstate Commerce. Basically they said that if a firearm that is made legally, sold legally, marketed legally, and functioned as designed, then no tort case can be filed on those grounds.

    If taken to SCOTUS they would say that firearms are a part of interstate commerce. The Feds already have laws and enforcement for improper selling and manufacture of firearms. The legislature makes all kinds of liability laws and exlusion from liability while performing certain jobs or acts.

    I see firearm liability the same way. The Feds tell FFLs and makers exactly what to do and how to do it. Now Brady wants to sue them for basically following federal laws. Which is why congress said, NO. If they follow the laws then they are immune. If they do not follow the laws the both criminal and civil cases can go forward.

    If firearm maker liability exemption is un-constitutional, then so is judicial, police and many others that are doing what the law demands they do.
     
  6. viper32cm

    viper32cm New Member

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    If I remember correctly there are similar immunities in place for producers of certain dugs. My torts professor told my class last yea that a while back (maybe it was the 70s) the only way the gov't could get companies to produce a vaccine (I think flu) was to assure them that they would be immune from civil liability. The government granted them the immunity.

    So by analogy, same situation.

    And if Raich falls within the commerce clause powers THIS must certainly does as well, unless some idiot judge hollows out an exception (you know, for the children).

    In fact this should be fairly good commerce clause argument (or maybe even necessary and proper).

    I heard once that Barret firearms is able to sell .50 cals to the government for a much cheaper rate because of the economies of scale that civilian demand creates for them. Helping to keep costs down for the purposes of maintaining the armed forces seems like it would implicate a lot of Article I powers. I'm sure this is true of other gun makers as well.
     
  7. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

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  8. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Vandall? :D Tell him I said, "Hi!"

    If he mentions me carrying a gun to class or arresting somebody during one of his classes, just keep in mind that the stories were exaggerated within 24 hours of the occurrence.
     
  9. viper32cm

    viper32cm New Member

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    No I had Smith for torts, though when the the law in question passed I heard that Vandall had a heart attack over it.

    That was the first day I let loose with all my pro2a furry on one of my fellow students. :)