BELLEVUE, WA – What appears to have been a blatant effort by the State of Illinois to go “judge shopping” to transfer several federal lawsuits challenging the new state law banning so-called “assault weapons” and their magazines has backfired, the Second Amendment Foundation said today.
“Our lawsuit and others have actually all been transferred to a very fair-minded judge,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “We anticipated the cases would eventually be consolidated, but instead of winding up with a judge who the state hoped would be unfavorable to Second Amendment issues, I believe we now have an unbiased judge.”
All of the cases have been assigned to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois. SAF’s case, filed with the Illinois State Rifle Association and Firearms Policy Coalition, is known as Harrel v. Raoul.
“This effort will likely come back to haunt Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Attorney General Kwame Raoul,” Gottlieb said. “The governor made a spectacle out of signing an extremist gun ban law, and we immediately challenged it in federal court. The attorney general is in the uncomfortable position of having to defend the law, and he’s also a defendant in the case. Their judge shopping efforts have backfired.”
Gottlieb said last summer’s Supreme Court ruling in the Bruen case is making it tough for gun prohibitionists to justify laws which have been penalizing honest citizens for decades, and new gun control schemes designed to ratchet down on Second Amendment rights even further.
“Illinois has to find a way to justify Pritzker’s gun ban, and the state cannot possibly do that because it is not consistent with historical tradition dating back to when the Constitution was ratified,” Gottlieb said. “Pritzker and others like him believe the Second Amendment is a privilege, not a right. In reality, they think the Second Amendment is a loophole, and they are determined to seal it shut because citizen disarmament is really what this is all about.
“We’re confident the court will shut them down, instead,” he concluded.