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Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton
Press release opposing US Circuit Court opinion in Parker v. District of Columbia and Adrian Fenty
March 9, 2007




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For Immediate Release
March 9, 2007
Contact: Doxie A. McCoy
(202) 225-8050, (202)225-8143-cell

Web Site: http://www.norton.house.gov

Norton Urges City to Continue Struggle to Save Gun Safety Laws in the Name of D.C. Residents

Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) released the following statement in reaction to today's federal court decision striking down the District's gun ban:

"The 2-1 court majority has engaged in almost unprecedented overreaching to overturn the District's 30-year old handgun ban.  The decision creates a new individual right by stretching the Second Amendment and goes on to equate the Second Amendment with the revered First Amendment that protects speech, press and religion.  Judges are virtually instructed to decide cases on grounds that do not implicate the Constitution, whenever possible.  If the judges were offended by D.C.'s efforts to protect its citizens from handguns, there were a number of narrower grounds that could have been used and almost always would have been chosen on a principled basis by the court.  I urge the city to seek a stay allowing our gun safety law to remain effective pending appeal.  If a higher court chooses to allow this unprecedented decision to stand, the city nevertheless will be able to enact a handgun law almost as strict, that passes constitutional inspection in my view. 

"We are not intimidated by this court's virtual partnership with the NRA.  We have successfully fought four attempts by Congress to overturn the District's gun safety laws.  No gap in gun safety protections for the citizens of the District of Columbia must be permitted." 

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