Judge asked to order New Jersey to restore 2nd Amendment

By WND Staff

A federal judge is being asked to order New Jersey to restore Second Amendment rights of its citizens after shutting down closing gun shops and the issuing of weapons permits.

The Second Amendment Foundation filed an amended complaint in its federal case against Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy and State Police Supt. Patrick Callahan, adding several plaintiffs who assert violations of civil rights.

The organization also has asked the judge for an immediate restraining order.

The case by the Second Amendment Foundation and the New Jersey Second Amendment Society is on behalf of Robert Kashinsky and Legend Firearms, a gun shop in the state.

“Gov. Murphy cannot simply suspend the Second Amendment, and neither can Supt. Callahan,” said SAF founder Alan M. Gottlieb. “Yet, under this emergency order, that’s exactly what they’re doing. The Constitution, and federal law, don’t allow that. New Jersey may have been the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights, but they’re the last state to recognize it.”

The case developed when Kashinsky sought to purchase a firearm for personal protection during the current coronavirus pandemic.

However, Murphy issued Executive Order 107 on March 21 ording all non-essential retail businesses closed to the public. The order does not have licensed firearms dealers on its list of “essential” businesses that may continue operating during the crisis.

The complaint charges the shutdown is a violation of the Second Amendmen.

“In order for New Jersey residents to purchase firearms,” explained Gottlieb, “they must go through a licensed firearms retailer and pass a background check. However, Murphy’s order was subsequently followed by a notice posted on the state police website that the agency is no longer conducting background checks.”

The case is in U.S. District Court in New Jersey.

New co-plaintiffs are Gina DiFazio, Jontell Platts, Witold Kwiatkowski, Legacy Indoor Range and Armory LLC and the Firearms Policy Coalition.

“We are thrilled to be joined by our friends at FPC, along with other New Jersey residents whose Second Amendment rights are being trampled by Gov. Murphy’s order,” said Gottlieb. “As we say in our amended complaint, Murphy’s order has forcibly eliminating all lawful channels of access to constitutionally protected arms. By requiring that people not leave their homes to legally purchase firearms and ammunition, even if they follow public health guidance for social distancing, their rights are being denied.”

“Ten years ago,” Gottlieb recalled, “the U.S. Supreme Court proclaimed that the Second Amendment is not a ‘second-class right’ but it’s being treated that way in New Jersey. The right to keep and bear arms is not subject to the whims of any state official, and it’s time for that message to be delivered clearly by the federal courts.”

The case seeks a declaratory ruling enforcing Second Amendment rights.

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