The Virginia Supreme Court is being asked to fix some alleged violations of the Second Amendment that have been created by a state government ban on weapons on public property.
The fight was brought on behalf of Gun Owners of America and the Virginia Citizens Defense League as well as several individuals against Gov. Ralph Northam by the Law and Freedom firm of William J. Olson, P.C.
The fight is over the agenda announced by majority Democrats in the state legislature to impose draconian gun controls on everyone in the state.
Protests have been announced, and one event is scheduled for Monday
So Northam announced a ban on firearms in Capitol Square, from Friday night until Tuesday. During that time, weapons of any kind will be prohibited because the governor believes it is an “emergency.
Northam claimed there was “credible intelligence” that militias and gun-rights advocates were making threats.
The ruling from Richmond Chief Judge Joi Jeter Taylor affirming the ban was applauded by Northam. In a statement he said, “These threats are real — as evidenced by reports of neo-Nazis arrested this morning after discussing plans to head to Richmond with firearms.”
The FBI on Thursday did arrest three alleged members of a radical group – on gun charges, claiming the agency was worried about violence at the planned events in Richmond Monday.
But lawyers for the Second Amendment rights organizations explained Northam’s order was “an unconstitutional restraint on rallygoers.”
Taylor, however, declined to recognize that.
The judge said there are limits on the Second Amendment.
VCDL President Philip Van Cleave said he didn’t hear anything in the ruling “that made any sense in our case.” So the case was being moved to the state’s highest court.
The rules committee in the newly Democrat majority legislature already has permanently banned guns inside the Capitol or an office building.
Democrats, the majority in both legislative houses, as well as occupying the governor’s office, have launched an aggressive attack on the Second Amendment, demanding background checks on all sales, limiting purchases, letting local governments impose bans, and more.
Other proposals have included a ban on “assault weapons” and a “red flag” plan to allow police to take guns if they think there’s a threat.
Browne had explained that his organization didn’t dispute the governor’s decision to declare an emergency, because of the expected size of the event. But he noted the state’s own lawmakers approved in 2012 a ban on using such a declaration “to in any way limit or prohibit the rights of people to keep and bear arms.”
The judge’s ruling said, “The Capitol Square in Richmond, Virginia, contains office buildings for many state employees. These buildings are sensitive locations, as they are ‘sufficiently integrated with the Capitol.’ … The plaintiffs in this case will not suffer an irreparable harm sufficient to justify the injunction sought … “
The judge denied the request for a temporary injunction against the ban.