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Hunter
01-19-2008, 7:20 AM
GOA is pushing Bush to withraw the Solicitor General's amicus brief.

SPRINGFIELD, Va., Jan. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Gun Owners of
America (GOA), a grassroots lobby representing over 300,000
Americans, has called on the Bush administration to withdraw an
anti-gun brief field by the Solicitor General in the U.S. Supreme Court.

The amicus brief, filed last Friday in the D.C. gun ban case of D.C.
v. Heller, argued that any gun ban - no matter how sweeping - could
be constitutional if some court determines that it is "reasonable."

"If the Supreme Court were to accept the Solicitor General's line of
argument," said Larry Pratt, Executive Director of GOA, "D.C.'s
categorical gun ban of virtually all self-defense firearms could well
be found to be constitutional, even if the court, as predicted, holds
that the Second Amendment protects 'individual' rights."

The Solicitor General's suggestion that comprehensive gun bans are
constitutional if some court determines they are "reasonable" was
enthusiastically greeted by anti-gun zealots - probably because it
represents the lowest standard of constitutional review.

"In contrast to other provisions in the Bill of Rights, which can
only be trumped by 'compelling state interests,' the Second Amendment
would be relegated to an inferior position at the lowest rung of the
constitutional ladder, should the Justice Department prevail," said Pratt.

"Moreover, under the administration's amicus brief, a national ban on
all firearms - including hunting rifles - could be 'constitutional,'
even if the Supreme Court decides - on ample historical evidence -
that the Founders intended the Second Amendment as an individual right.

"Rather than argue that 'shall not be infringed' is a categorical
prohibition on government gun-banning, the administration has chosen
to align itself with those who do not believe in self defense or
civilian gun ownership," Pratt concluded.

As a result, GOA put out a public call for the Justice Department to
withdraw its anti-gun brief, and invited the National Rifle
Association to join it in fighting this anti-gun development.

Hopi
01-19-2008, 9:42 AM
Great article. Good for the GOA!

Piper
01-19-2008, 9:58 AM
By that bit of "logic", if a court rules that restrictions or bans on speech and religion, are "reasonable", then those bans could be imposed. For that matter, the government could suspend the right against self incrimination or search and seizure and deem it "constitutional."

Either they didn't think this thing out when they wrote the brief or their intentions are to begin dismantling the constitution and replace it with a more dictatorial government. I personally want to believe that the former is true, but my gut says that the latter is more correct.

MrTuffPaws
01-19-2008, 12:42 PM
....and replace it with a more dictatorial government.....

You don't say?

artherd
01-19-2008, 12:42 PM
Obscurely titillating at windmills, I'm not impressed.

M. Sage
01-19-2008, 7:23 PM
.. that's going to do a lot of good? :rolleyes:

FreedomIsNotFree
01-20-2008, 1:42 AM
At least the GOA is pushing for something to be done in this regard. I would like to see the NRA do more than just say they disagree with it and file their own amicus.

Where is the outrage?

hoffmang
01-20-2008, 9:24 AM
Free,

1. I don't think its possible to withdraw a brief - it's at least relatively unprecedented. It's perfect for GOA - it sounds TOUGH... too bad it's basically impossible.

2. NRA is doing a little more than just carping on its website. Many trips and plans were immediately changed the weekend of the filing.

Google "solicitor general withdraw brief" and note that the only return ever mentioned on the web is GOA's request..

-Gene

FreedomIsNotFree
01-20-2008, 5:29 PM
Free,

1. I don't think its possible to withdraw a brief - it's at least relatively unprecedented. It's perfect for GOA - it sounds TOUGH... too bad it's basically impossible.

2. NRA is doing a little more than just carping on its website. Many trips and plans were immediately changed the weekend of the filing.

Google "solicitor general withdraw brief" and note that the only return ever mentioned on the web is GOA's request..

-Gene

So, you are of the opinion that everything that can be done is actually occurring? Just because the GOA said it and not the NRA does not make it a call that should not go out...regardless of historical precedence..or lack thereof. New precedence is created by the courts all the time...why should we preclude this request if we dont know that it directly violates the rules of the court...etc..etc.? Are you aware of any such rule?

Here are the Supreme Court Rules in regards to Amicus Curiae.
http://www.law.cornell.edu/rules/supct/37.html

Perhaps you can shed some light on what you mean by "Many trips and plans were immediately changed the weekend of the filing." in regards to the NRA.

I've been an NRA member for over 20 years and agree that they are the key political action group when dealing with matters concerning the 2nd Amendment. That does not mean everything they do or dont do is ideal. That does not mean that everything the GOA does is wrong. The NRA kool aid gets a bit rich around here from time to time.

hoffmang
01-20-2008, 6:01 PM
FiF,

This is one of those places you're going to have to trust me and I think I can ask for that with a little more credibility than most. If I specify, I may lose the trust that gets me the details. You should remember that I'm the same person who was very quick to complain when NRA attempted to moot Parker by passing new law...

Also, I don't see in the SCOTUS rules an ability for an Amicus to withdraw, and even if there is an ability to withdraw, I doubt seriously that the SG can accept that level of egg on face. However, I would love for him to have a nice scramble for sunglasses...

-Gene

CALI-gula
01-20-2008, 6:18 PM
It's likley the NRA was working on this well before GOA ever knew it existed. If anything, the NRA is too busy working some substantial things out in order to have press releases with more meaningful development, with relevance beyond what the general firearm community already knows. The GOA press release reveals nothing nor does nothing that hasn't been know for several days. There are other threads here that have been talking the topic to death for several days. Seems that GOA is late to the game (again) and for that matter, the GOA is riding on the coat-tails of the NRA, doing nothing more than holding up a sign saying:

"US TOO - NO REALLY, US TOOOO!!!!"

...as usual.

:rolleyes:

.

Blackflag
01-20-2008, 7:01 PM
They could withdraw the brief if they wanted to...but of course, they will not. I see nothing wrong with asking them to do so.

What is the NRA doing anyways? Does anybody know if they're filing a brief? Not that it matters.

aileron
01-20-2008, 7:11 PM
I've been an NRA member for over 20 years and agree that they are the key political action group when dealing with matters concerning the 2nd Amendment. That does not mean everything they do or dont do is ideal. That does not mean that everything the GOA does is wrong. The NRA kool aid gets a bit rich around here from time to time.

Whats done is done, we just have to accept our fate and deal with it.

The GOA, is banging metal plates together to get attention. It wont have any real affect, if anything, it could indicate that the GOA hasn't thought this through, or as I suspect has thought it through and is hoping to garner more support (ie money) by making a lot of noise.

I'm not saying thats whats going on, but it appears that way.

Blackflag
01-20-2008, 7:13 PM
The GOA, is banging metal plates together to get attention.

Isn't that the objective of a political organization? To bring attention to issues?

FreedomIsNotFree
01-20-2008, 7:20 PM
FiF,

This is one of those places you're going to have to trust me and I think I can ask for that with a little more credibility than most. If I specify, I may lose the trust that gets me the details. You should remember that I'm the same person who was very quick to complain when NRA attempted to moot Parker by passing new law...

Also, I don't see in the SCOTUS rules an ability for an Amicus to withdraw, and even if there is an ability to withdraw, I doubt seriously that the SG can accept that level of egg on face. However, I would love for him to have a nice scramble for sunglasses...

-Gene

Gene,

My intention was not to call your word into question. I'm simply asking the question..."Is all being done?". Even considering your contacts within the NRA, I dont believe you, I , the NRA or anyone else is in a position to make such a claim.

There is a whole lot more than can be done publicly to shame the Bush Administration. I fear its just politics...with the election season upon us, there are those within the NRA that dont want to draw any ire towards the Republican party. This may be in the interest of the NRA....this may be in the interest of the Republican party....but is this in the best interest of gun owners...the jury is still out.

Blackflag
01-20-2008, 7:25 PM
There is a whole lot more than can be done publicly to shame the Bush Administration.

I agree. I don't understand this attitude of "Whats done is done, we just have to accept our fate and deal with it." That makes no sense, and it ignores the way the whole system works. I also don't like this "NRA can do no wrong" attitude.

The Heller case is THE fight. I seriously doubt there will be another one in the next 10 or 20 years. Everybody should be pulling out all the stops on this one.

FreedomIsNotFree
01-20-2008, 7:30 PM
It's likley the NRA was working on this well before GOA ever knew it existed. If anything, the NRA is too busy working some substantial things out in order to have press releases with more meaningful development, with relevance beyond what the general firearm community already knows. The GOA press release reveals nothing nor does nothing that hasn't been know for several days. There are other threads here that have been talking the topic to death for several days. Seems that GOA is late to the game (again) and for that matter, the GOA is riding on the coat-tails of the NRA, doing nothing more than holding up a sign saying:

"US TOO - NO REALLY, US TOOOO!!!!"

...as usual.

:rolleyes:

.

Well, you can roll your eyes, poke fun..etc..etc...but at the end of the day, you need to realize that not everything the NRA does or doesn't do is in the best interest of gun owners., either in the short or long term.

Your type of blind following is what worries me. Hindsight is always 20/20, but if you were around in 1934 would you have agreed with the NRA and their support of the National Firearms Act? How about their support of the Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986?

Is this where I'm supposed to put a ":roleseyes:" icon.....?

FreedomIsNotFree
01-20-2008, 7:37 PM
I agree. I don't understand this attitude of "Whats done is done, we just have to accept our fate and deal with it." That makes no sense, and it ignores the way the whole system works. I also don't like this "NRA can do no wrong" attitude.

The Heller case is THE fight. I seriously doubt there will be another one in the next 10 or 20 years. Everybody should be pulling out all the stops on this one.

Blackflag...

As I've said before, I've been a member of the NRA for over 20 years. With that said, you have to understand that there is an interesting dynamic at work here on CalGuns.net in regards to any group that purports to support the 2nd Amendment that doesn't have the acronym "NRA".

On the State level, the criticism of such groups as the CPRA, GOC..etc..etc..is well deserved, but the mentality has devolved into everything NRA = Good, while everything NOT NRA = Bad. Unless the NRA is spearheading the movement, it raises instant suspicion and condemnation from some people.

I agree completely that Heller is THE case and we need to be doing EVERYTHING we can to win...and if that means shaming the Republicans or anyone else for that matter, that is simply what needs to be done. Clearly, all is NOT being done.

hoffmang
01-20-2008, 7:44 PM
FiF,

When you see me defending NRA on this issue you do have to think one thing through. Now that this case has Cert, NRA has to be in it to win it. Losing will cost a lot more than winning. It was a different analysis before Cert was granted.

To be crass, NRA is proud of having political juice. You think they take getting seriously slighted lightly?

-Gene

FreedomIsNotFree
01-20-2008, 8:06 PM
FiF,

When you see me defending NRA on this issue you do have to think one thing through. Now that this case has Cert, NRA has to be in it to win it. Losing will cost a lot more than winning. It was a different analysis before Cert was granted.

To be crass, NRA is proud of having political juice. You think they take getting seriously slighted lightly?

-Gene

I agree to a degree, but lets not assume that if Heller loses its all bad for the NRA. In fact, nothing raises more money that controversy...I imagine the NRA has been doing pretty well, financially, over the past year.

That really is beside the point, because I dont believe the NRA is working towards anything other than a win, a complete win, but again, is EVERTHING being done? I dont believe so, especially in regards to the SG's amicus.

Maybe I missed it, but I haven't heard anything from the RNC is this regard.

aileron
01-21-2008, 5:43 AM
Isn't that the objective of a political organization? To bring attention to issues?

Yes its one objective.

Would it not be more ethical to raise the issue, garner support for money, so you can fight the outcome? Then to cry foul and get people worked up on something that is not doable?

Would it not be more appropriate to address the issue in ways that can make a difference?

Blackflag
01-21-2008, 4:51 PM
Would it not be more ethical to raise the issue, garner support for money, so you can fight the outcome? Then to cry foul and get people worked up on something that is not doable?

I don't think that's an question of ethics...maybe strategy.

I personally don't think that issuing a press release saying that the Bush Administration screwed us over and we should demand they correct the situation - is neccessarily a bad strategy.

I'm not clear what the better strategy is at this point? Raise the money to fight the outcome? Meaning what? The next 2nd amd. case that goes to the supreme court? Don't hold your breath.

It's just not clear to me how this is a bad thing. The more organizations screaming right now, the better. I'm curious to find out everybody who is filing amicus briefs.

People should be pooling money to hire the best possible lawyers to fight this issue now. That's the strategy. And not waiting for the NRA to do it for them - and hire the amateur gun-focused lawyers that they normally do.

hoffmang
01-21-2008, 10:00 PM
There is not a firearms attorney of any quality that isn't busy finishing Amicus drafts as we speak.

There is a whole lot of work going on behind the scenes right now on the briefs for this case. Anybody noticed the steady stream of academic and law review articles that came out in the past couple of months in time to be cited in the briefs?

-Gene

Blackflag
01-21-2008, 10:38 PM
There is not a firearms attorney of any quality that isn't busy finishing Amicus drafts as we speak.

That's the point - you don't want a "firearms" attorney working on this. You want a Supreme Court attorney. Just like those that are hired by corporations when a case comes up that matters to them.

But they cost a lot of money. And they aren't the friends of the NRA. Is everything being done, he asks? Not in my opinion. I guess we'll see when/if they submit a brief.

That just doesn't smell right in my opinion. They should have as much money - or more - available for a brief like this than any corporation or pac. Yet they go with the amatuers... Whatever.

hoffmang
01-22-2008, 12:01 AM
That's the point - you don't want a "firearms" attorney working on this. You want a Supreme Court attorney. Just like those that are hired by corporations when a case comes up that matters to them.

But they cost a lot of money. And they aren't the friends of the NRA. Is everything being done, he asks? Not in my opinion. I guess we'll see when/if they submit a brief.

That just doesn't smell right in my opinion. They should have as much money - or more - available for a brief like this than any corporation or pac. Yet they go with the amatuers... Whatever.

You find me the guy who spends a lot of time in front of SCOTUS and bills north of $1000 an hour and I'll find you a guy who signed onto the ABA brief in support of DC... Extra points if you notice the ex SG who signs onto our side.

All of the issues and dynamics of this case are unprecedented. However, the briefs on our side are going to be excellent. If you doubt me, go read the briefs at the appellate level. Also, expect to compare state AG counts...

Thurgood Marshall wasn't a high priced appellate attorney either...

-Gene

otalps
01-22-2008, 1:25 AM
Thurgood Marshall wasn't a high priced appellate attorney either...

-Gene

You know, I think Alan L. Isaacman wasn't either.

aileron
01-22-2008, 5:47 AM
I don't think that's an question of ethics...maybe strategy.

Ethics is always involved if your purposely manipulating the public.


I personally don't think that issuing a press release saying that the Bush Administration screwed us over and we should demand they correct the situation - is neccessarily a bad strategy.

True; and I wouldn't expect anything, nor do I think its appropriate, to suggest that NRA isn't doing anything, because they didn't demand the same.


I'm not clear what the better strategy is at this point? Raise the money to fight the outcome? Meaning what? The next 2nd amd. case that goes to the supreme court? Don't hold your breath.

Naa, didn't mean it that way, was saying that GOA Might Be raising money to raise money, but if your going to raise money right now, raise it for paying your lawyer fees for the amicus brief. Tis all.


It's just not clear to me how this is a bad thing. The more organizations screaming right now, the better. I'm curious to find out everybody who is filing amicus briefs.

People should be pooling money to hire the best possible lawyers to fight this issue now. That's the strategy. And not waiting for the NRA to do it for them - and hire the amateur gun-focused lawyers that they normally do.

You need to understand that this has been ongoing for awhile. What could you do??? Your filing your amicus, or your Gura. Gura will take care of it in his brief best he can, everyone else will try to address it, in their amicus. If they didn't already, unless they choose to ignore it.

Everybody has been burning the midnight oil for awhile now to get this together. Plus, I don't know where you get the idea that the NRA has amateur lawyers. But okay, to each his own.

Blackflag
01-23-2008, 11:31 AM
You find me the guy who spends a lot of time in front of SCOTUS and bills north of $1000 an hour and I'll find you a guy who signed onto the ABA brief in support of DC... Extra points if you notice the ex SG who signs onto our side.

All of the issues and dynamics of this case are unprecedented. However, the briefs on our side are going to be excellent. If you doubt me, go read the briefs at the appellate level. Also, expect to compare state AG counts...

Thurgood Marshall wasn't a high priced appellate attorney either...

-Gene

There are about 35 private attorneys who are the 'go to' guys for supreme court litigation - when it's a critical issue that is worth a lot of money to a company/organization. Maybe another 100 who are hired for really critical amicus briefs.

We haven't seen the NRA brief yet, so who can say... but I'm willing to bet that not one of those attorneys have been hired by the NRA. As you said, they hire "firearms lawyers." (likely their compadres and frequently-used lawyers). People who have zero supreme court experience - let alone at the top of the supreme court game. So draw your own conclusions.

And you have to realize that this is no longer a firearms issue... it's a supreme court issue. Very different strategy, requiring a different lawyer. A "firearms lawyer" will lose. Period. And I wonder where the member money is spent - if not on the most critical case in the past 50 yrs?

Have a nice day. :)

yellowfin
01-24-2008, 9:07 AM
How about calling for firing of the solicitor general for having that view in the first place?

Outlaw Josey Wales
01-24-2008, 9:53 AM
Rep. Virgil Goode To The Bush White House: Withdraw Your Brief

Gun Owners of America E-Mail Alert
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151
Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408
http://www.gunowners.org

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Rep. Virgil Goode (R-VA) has sent the following letter to the White
House asking them to undo the huge harm they have caused the Second
Amendment with the brief they filed in the DC gun ban case.

-------------------------------------

January 22, 2008
President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington DC 20500

Dear President Bush:

Your Solicitor General has just filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme
Court in the D.C. v. Heller case arguing that categorical gun bans of
virtually all self-defense firearms are constitutional if a court
determines they are "reasonable" -- the lowest standard of
constitutional review.

If this view prevails, a national ban on all firearms -- including
hunting rifles -- could be constitutional, even if the court decides
-- on ample historical evidence -- that the Founders intended the
Second Amendment as an individual right.

I would ask that you direct the Justice Department to withdraw this
unfortunate brief and to replace it with an opinion which reflects
the right of law-abiding Americans to keep and bear arms.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely yours,

Virgil Goode

-------------------------------------

Rep. Goode is following up his action by circulating the letter among
his colleagues. He is asking other members of Congress to add their
signatures in anticipation of sending President Bush another copy of
the letter.

Your help is needed immediately to convince your Representative to
join with Rep. Goode.

Please go to the Gun Owners Legislative Action Center at
http://www.gunowners.org/activism.htm to send a pre-written message
urging your Rep. to be a part of this important initiative. If you
prefer to contact your Representative in another fashion, here is the
text we are using:

Dear Representative:

Please join with Rep. Virgil Good in signing a letter to the White
House urging the President to withdraw the Solicitor General's very
ill-advised brief in the D.C. gun ban case, D.C. v. Heller.

Gun Owners of America will be keeping me posted about the members of
the House who have joined with Representative Goode.

Thank you very much.


****************************

Of course, GOA is actively working the Heller case as well. In fact,
just today our legal and educational arm, Gun Owners Foundation,
officially notified the Court of its intent to file an amicus brief.
We'll be certain to make that brief available to you as soon as it
is filed. In the meantime, last week GOA issued a press release
blasting the Solicitor General's action that was picked up by
numerous media outlets across the country. The press release is
posted at http://www.gunowners.org/pr0801.htm on the GOA website.

****************************

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bounce back as undeliverable.

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bruss01
01-24-2008, 10:07 AM
This brief was nothing short of yet another unconstitutional power grab by the Bush administration, i.e. it's a right, sure but it doesn't really "mean" anything in real terms. Which is double-speak at it's finest, sounding supportive while actually pulling the rug out from under us. This guy just does not want anyone having any power at all unless it serves him, it seems.

I have written my local rep asking him to sign on to the request already in motion. I have also written President Bush personally and expressed my disappointment and a request that the brief be withdrawn.

Just because there is no written mechanism for withdrawing a brief does not mean it cannot happen, just that it is not documented. I'm sure things of this nature, and things of even stranger natures, are accomodated occasionally.

I do believe that this is a worthy effort - if not for effect, then simply so that we can say we did all we could do.

Outlaw Josey Wales
01-24-2008, 10:08 AM
http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?print=yes&id=24582

Bush Administration Wrong on Guns
by Sean P. Trende
Posted 01/22/2008


Every Supreme Court term has at least one “blockbuster” case that send shockwaves not only through the legal community, but also through the general public. Cases like the Kelo decision, allowing governments to convert your house into a shopping mall (provided it isn’t too nice of a house), the first and second Carhart decisions, denying and then allowing restriction of partial birth abortion, or the recent Parents Involved case restricting the ability of school districts to use race in their admission processes, shape the public consciousness about the Court and its actions.

Although there are several important cases this term, none will have the effect on the public’s mind that the Supreme Court’s decision in District of Columbia v. Heller will have. In that case, the Supreme Court will finally take up one of the great, undecided matters of constitutional law: Whether the Second Amendment guarantees a personal right to bear arms. Whatever the Court decides, it will have implications on electoral politics for the next generation. Unfortunately, the Bush Administration has ignored an opportunity to push the Court toward the right on the issue, and transform the politics of the 2008 elections in the process.

A key step in the development of Second Amendment jurisprudence was the Bush Administration’s decision to adopt the “individual rights” theory of the Second Amendment. This theory holds that the Supreme Court’s Miller decision was, in essence, incorrect, and that the right to keep in bear arms means what it says -- that an individual has a right to own guns. The Department of Justice in 2001 reversed the Clinton Administration’s previous position on the right to bear arms, setting off a firestorm of criticism. Yet for the past seven years, the Administration has stood its ground and consistently instructed its United States Attorneys to argue for the individual right to bear arms, if they could given the law of their Circuit.

So it came as an absolute shock to many supporters of an individual right to keep and bear arms when the Solicitor General filed a brief in the Heller matter opposing the plaintiffs’ claims. This remarkable brief brings back memories of the Administration’s position in the Grutter and Gratz cases, where the Administration argued that, while the schools’ affirmative action policies were unconstitutional, the rationale behind them was not.

The Solicitor General’s brief in Heller similarly tries to split the baby. It argues, strenuously, that the Constitution does protect and individual’s right to bear arms. It also argues that, like other rights in the Bill of Rights, the right to keep and bear arms is not unlimited. It then suggests a more restrictive test for the right than that used by the Court of Appeals: that a court should consider the practical impact of the regulation on the right to bear arms and the government’s interest in the enforcement of the regulation, rather than the Court of Appeals’ more categorical approach to regulations of “Arms.” In other words, it argues for a kind of intermediate scrutiny. The Solicitor General suggests that the Court adopt a different test than that used by the Court of Appeals, and then remand the case for further review.

Which raises the question: What the heck was the Bush Administration thinking? For decades, a critical component of the Republican coalition has been working class gun owners who are bothered by the Democrats’ embrace of gun control. Republicans actually seem to have won that battle, with Democrats backing off of gun control legislation in the recent Congress. Why after enduring so much hostile press would the Bush Administration sell out the NRA at this critical juncture? And why make the reversal in a difficult election year, when the support of gun control opponents will be so critical to Republican fortunes?

There are two potential answers. The generous answer lies in the composition of the Court. It is thought that the four “conservative” Justices -- Thomas, Scalia, Roberts, and Alito -- are sympathetic to the individual right to bear arms. The four “liberal” Justices -- Stevens, Ginsburg, Breyer and Souter -- may be more hostile. This leaves Justice Kennedy as the swing vote. Kennedy is notoriously difficult to predict, especially on high-profile “social issues.” It is also true that within the next few years, Justices Stevens and Ginsburg will be replaced, possibly with a Republican President. So the Solicitor General may be gambling that Justice Kennedy will be easier to persuade with a lower standard, or that if the plaintiffs get a remand, the Court may be more conservative when the case comes back up, and more likely to win in the long run.

The less generous answer lies in the reality of the Bush Administration. Contrary to the caricatures painted by liberals, there are precious few issues that the Administration has not sold the Right out on. No Child Left Behind, the prescription drug benefit, monstrous budget deficits, McCain-Feingold, Patient’s Bill of Rights . . . all of these issues cross the gamut of modern politics, and all of them are issues where the Bush Administration’s Rovian plotting has placed it at loggerheads with standard conservatism. Even on judges, where the Administration usually wins plaudits, conservatives forget Harriet Miers, and forget that two of Bush’s first ten Court of Appeals appointments were Clinton appointees. Is it really that hard to believe that the Administration would lurch to the left on the issue of guns?

Regardless, this issue is in the Supreme Court of the United States. Its decisions are not easily overruled once they are handed down. Even if one gives the Administration the benefit of the doubt, it has made an awful error here by siding against the District’s citizens. The job of a conservative administration is to attempt to persuade the Court to adopt conservative views, not to attempt to play politics or split the baby. It has foregone an opportunity to write a brief that could persuade the Justices to adopt a view of the Second Amendment that assigned scrutiny commensurate with those of other guarantees of the Bill of Rights. Moreover, in a high stakes election, which is likely to be a tough one for the Republican, the Administration has risked alienating a substantial portion of the Republican base, who are understandably incensed with the Administration, and will be apoplectic if the Court does not affirm the Court of Appeals.

The Administration seems to be playing a game of high stakes poker with an incendiary issue in an election year. One can only hope it does not get us all burned.