Heller And The Election

Some commenters out there, among them Instapundit, say that the decision in Heller today takes gun rights off the table as an election issue. I beg to differ.

The decision was 5-4. That means that everything could change if a Justice is confirmed whose views are more in line with Obama's views (which appear to have changed) of a while back. Don't forget that he lives in a state that is one of two that are totally out of touch on this issue. The two? Illinois and Wisconsin. The only two states in the nation that do not have some form of concealed carry laws.

Of course what are the odds of getting another Justice Thomas? Higher with McCain than Obama. FWIW.

For some background on the case visit Clayton Cramer.

Cross Posted at Power and Control

posted by Simon on 06.26.08 at 02:33 PM










Comments

Anonymous   ·  June 26, 2008 5:19 PM
Anonymous   ·  June 26, 2008 5:19 PM

How the 2nd and the 14th amendment relate is going to have some very interesting ramifications for decades to come.

In a bizarre way, an Obama victory would be good for gun rights. In order to strike down most state and local gun control laws you need to follow the precedents laid down in the wake of the 14th amendment and disregard the tenth amendment. To preserve those precedents you need 1960's style, liberal judges of the type that Obama would likely appoint. Judges who view the tenth amendment with higher regard would be the worst thing for gun rights, because they would affirm the various states' right to regulate firearms. I think the members of the court recognized this dichotomy and that is why they limited the breadth of their ruling.

Gun control advocates can't, logically, have it both ways. How will they square the circle? The only way I see around it, for them, is to place a heavy penalty on the citizen for discharging his firearm. That is they will attack your right to defend yourself and they will attack the castle doctrine.

Jardinero1   ·  June 26, 2008 6:55 PM

I agree that this is only the beginning of the issue as far as the election goes. The next president will either begin the process of building a court that will either uphold or trample down this ruling.

B. Durant   ·  June 26, 2008 10:48 PM

J-1. I don't see a conflict or dichotomy. The court declared that states have the right to regulate, but not forbid, gun ownership (gross oversimplification). That is a very typical narrow rather than sweeping SCOTUS opinion.

Assistant Village Idiot   ·  June 27, 2008 10:21 AM

If I could see what Sen. McCain's actual conception of the role of the federal government in the US was, I might be more sanguine... as it is neither candidate has a grasp that the executive is not a legislative branch, but the one that executes policy. Both have been far too expansive in the role of government and regulation, especially with Sen. McCain's view of the environment and support such regulation even when it infringes on the right of property owners to actually use their property in the case of ESA. Going back a few years you find the McCain-Lieberman bill to close the 'gun show loophole' which would mandate that attending a gunshow required that you tell the federal government you did so. I would be happier if Sen. McCain didn't see such an expansive role for government, but that is not the case. And as the Senate goes firmly D and Left, what are the chances that a Thomas, Alito, Roberts or Scalia would get passed by it? Getting divided government in the legislative-executive tussle is a two-way street: it checks expansive legislative views and reduces the power of the executive to get appointments.

Having an R by your name is not a magic antidote for judicial activism. George HW Bush had Souter, Reagan had O'Connor and Ford had Stevens. And if Sen. McCain went for 'bi-partisan' expediency out of the Senate club to get someone pushed through in case of Stevens bowing out... hmmmm... I like Lieberman just where he is, and don't think he is SCOTUS material. I have a hard time seeing someone half-way decent making it through the Senate process, considering the viciousness towards Roberts.

So, I detest Obama and distrust McCain. What a 'maverick' says and what he does are two different things. That is what a 'maverick' does, head one way then dart off in another because of whimsy and has no set course to stay on.

I will vote against Obama.

ajacksonian   ·  June 27, 2008 4:58 PM

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