(Article by John Crump republished from AmmoLand.com)
During the last election cycle, Oregon voters barely passed Ballot Measure 114 (BM 114). BM 114 made it so anyone buying a firearm would need a purchase permit. Although many states have pistol purchase permits, the Oregon law would go beyond any other permit in the country. State residents would need to take a training class, pass a background check, be fingerprinted, submit passport pictures, and pay a fee.
Another part of the law would ban magazines holding more than ten rounds. Although the magazine law does have a grandfather clause, if a gun owner is transporting magazines to any place, the standard compacity must be locked up in a separate container. According to the law, standard compacity magazines can only be stored on the owner’s private property. Concealed carry is not an exception for carrying a magazine holding more than ten rounds. Even using a standard compacity magazine in a self-defense situation in one’s home is not protected under the grandfather clause. The only thing the new law provides current magazine owners is an “affirmative defense” to prosecution from owning grandfathered magazines.
The complaint reads: “Additionally, BM114, does not appear to include a self-defense exception for usage of large capacity magazines, even while one is in their own home.”
GOA is asking the court for a temporary restraining order (TRO) and a preliminary injunction (PI) against the new law that was supposed to go into effect on December 8, 2022. The lawsuit names Oregon Governor Kate Brown, Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum, and Superintendent of the Oregon State Police Terri Davie as defendants. Since the case was filed, the state delayed the law’s implementation. Some think the delay was a direct result of the GOA-led lawsuit. One of the reasons why the gun groups were suing the state over the law was the fact that there wasn’t any way for a citizen to take the necessary training required to receive a purchase permit. That would have meant stripping the right of the people to acquire a firearm.
To get a preliminary injunction, the plaintiffs must prove two things. The first is if the plaintiffs will suffer irreparable harm. Stripping a person’s protected right demonstrates irrefutable harm to the plaintiffs, including the two named plaintiffs and the thousands of GOA members in the state of Oregon.
The second is that the plaintiffs are likely to succeed on the merits. The group isn’t challenging the law on Second Amendment grounds, although they reference the Second Amendment throughout the complaint. GOA isn’t seeking relief under federal law. They claim that the law violates the Oregon Constitution, which is analogous to the Second Amendment.
GOA’s lawyers also point out that gun stores must notify the State Police of all firearms transfers. The Oregon State Police are authorized to keep these records indefinitely. The plaintiffs argue that keeping these records constitutes an illegal gun registry since the Oregon State Police would catalog every transaction. The plaintiffs claim that this registry would be knocked down as unconstitutional under the Oregon Constitution.
The group claims that there is no historical analog for BM 114. Since nothing in the Oregon Constitution gives the state the power to issue a permit to purchase, then the groups argue the state cannot set up a scheme to issue permits. Although a judge might rule for the state using intermediate scrutiny, the United State Supreme Court knocked down the two-step test under the Bruin decision.
The court has not weighed in on the TRO or preliminary injunction, but a hearing will occur today.
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