NSSF Challenge; Judge Says Mags Not Protected


The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), the Connecticut-based firearms industry trade association, filed a legal challenge against Hawaii’s recently-enacted public nuisance law. The Hawaii law would will allow frivolous lawsuits against members of the firearms industry for the criminal and negligent misuse of firearms by remote third parties.

NSSF alleges the law is designed to evade the judgment of the U.S. Supreme Court and laws enacted by Congress. This is obviously correct.

“Hawaii is attempting to subvert the will of Congress when the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) was passed with a wide bipartisan majority in both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate and signed into law by President George W. Bush,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF’s Senior Vice President and General Counsel. “Public nuisance laws like Hawaii’s are nothing short of an attempt to drive ‘legislation through litigation,’ which is exactly why Congress passed PLCAA in the first place.

“These laws are unconstitutional and an abuse of the legal system to force a political agenda outside the legislative channels.”

Hawaii’s HB 426, signed into law by Gov. Josh Green, allows state officials and private parties to bring civil actions against firearms-industry members for damages resulting from the criminal misuse of firearms or ammunition by a remote third party.

Hawaii is attempting to resurrect the same sort of frivolous lawsuits that states and local governments attempted in the late 1990s and early 2000s, which led to Congress passing PLCAA. The PLCAA simply says that these agenda-driven lawsuits can’t be brought against a manufacturer or retailer that had nothing to do with the criminal or wrongful misuse of their product.

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In a 122-page written order issued in July, an Oregon U.S. district court judge said banning large-capacity magazines and requiring a permit to purchase a firearm are in keeping with “the nation’s history and tradition of regulating uniquely dangerous features of weapons and firearms to protect public safety.” Unbelievable.

In her decision, Judge Karin Immergut said large-capacity magazines “are not commonly used for self-defense, and are therefore not protected by the Second Amendment. The Second Amendment also allows governments to ensure that only law-abiding, responsible citizens keep and bear arms.”

Immergut is a former U.S. attorney for Oregon. She was appointed by then-President Donald Trump in 2019. He whiffed on that appointment.

The suit was challenging the state’s Ballot Measure 114, which passed in November 2022 with 50.6% of the vote. Despite the federal court decision, Ballot Measure 114 remains blocked by a state court. A trial is scheduled for this month in Harney County Circuit Court.

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The National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR) has issued a Travel Advisory for gun owners headed to and within Massachusetts in response to the State Legislature’s 140-page bill, House Docket 4420. HD 4420 is a comprehensive gun control bill that would ostensibly ban more guns than any current law in the United States. NAGR said, “Your gun rights and your freedom are at serious risk in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. If you live there you might want to pack your bags, and if you are thinking of traveling there, you need to reconsider.” — Todd Woodard


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