TriggerFinger


Parker v DC: Schedule Argument on Standing and the Merits


I have been following the case of Parker v DC, involving several residents of the District of Columbia suing the city in an attempt to strike down the ban on operational firearms (particularly handguns).  The case was filed before the NRA's similar case (Seegars v Gonzales) but due to various procedural issues has been waiting for the latter case to reach a conclusion before moving forward.  Thus, while the Seegars plaintiffs are currently waiting to see if the Supreme Court will hear their case, Parker v DC is moving forward before the a 3-judge panel at the DC Court of Appeals. 

When DC Appeals Court decided Seegars en banc, it freed up the Parker case to move forward.  Both sides in Parker filed a series of briefs arguing what the next step in the case should proceed, given the decision in Seegars.   We now have a decision on that point.

Without further ado... our side won.  Despite the similarities between the two cases, the court will schedule briefings and oral argument on both the question of standing and the merits of the case.  Here's the order in PDF format, if you want it.  The District of Columbia had argued for (what amounts to) summary dismissal, and they lost.

Here's the meat:
Upon consideration of the initial motion to issue a briefing schedule and set oral argument on the merits, the opposition thereto and motion for summary affirmance, the reply to the opposition to the initial motion and opposition to the motion for summary affirmance, the reply to the opposition to the motion for summary affirmance, the second motion to issue a briefing schedule and set oral argument on the merits, the opposition thereto, the reply, the motion to remand with instructions to dismiss or, alternatively, for summary affirmance, the opposition thereto, and the reply, it is ORDERED that the motion for summary affirmance and the motion to remand with instructions to dismiss or, alternatively, for summary affirmance be denied. The merits of the parties? positions are not so clear as to warrant summary action. See Taxpayers Watchdog, Inc. v. Stanley, 819 F.2d 294, 297 (D.C. Cir. 1987) (per curiam). It is FURTHER ORDERED that the motions to issue a briefing schedule and set oral argument on the merits be granted. The Clerk is instructed to calendar this case for presentation to a merits panel, and the parties are instructed to address both standing and the merits of the case in their briefs.
What this means is simple.  The Parker attorneys file a brief arguing their points; the District  files a reply brief, and the Parker attorneys file a response.  Once all those are filed oral arguments will be scheduled. 

Although this is clearly a win for our side, it's not the end of the case.  It suggests, but does not prove conclusively, that the judges are inclined to view the Parker case as being  distinguishable from Seegars.  However, we will still need to argue the merits of the case and the issue of standing.  The only thing that we won at this point is the right to continue the case -- but the Seegars precedent did put that at risk, so it's a necessary victory.

UPDATE: In the comments, the Heartless Libertarian asks whether Janice Rogers Brown might be on the panel.  I'd say there's a pretty good chance of that.  Why?  Because she was on the panel that produced this decision in our favor!  The order was issued by the trifecta of Raymond Randolph (Bush I), Karen Henderson (Bush I), and Janice Rogers Brown (Bush II). 

I don't know if they typically reshuffle the panels in the middle of a case, but I would think they would try to keep the same panel throughout if possible. 

This entry was published Thu Nov 03 19:34:29 CST 2005 by TriggerFinger and last updated 2005-11-03 19:34:29.0. [Tweet]

comments powered by Disqus

Subscribe to Atom Feed

I am not a lawyer, and nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice.

This site is run on custom blog software and is being actively developed. Please be forgiving of errors.


This website is an Amazon affiliate and will receive financial compensation for products purchased from Amazon through links on this site.