That’s the upshot of a recent decision by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in the case of Ezell v. City of Chicago. This was a challenge to the new regulations the city enacted in the wake of McDonald v. City of Chicago case, which applied the Second Amendment to the states.
In an attempt to circumvent the Supreme Court’s clear holding, Chicago’s ordinance first mandates that would-be gun owners receive training at a firing range but then prohibits firing ranges from operating in the city. The court, in a striking opinion by Judge Diane Sykes (put her on your Supreme Court shortlist for the next Republican administration), tells the city to go back to the drawing board.
I won’t go into the details, but the court applied something greater than intermediate (but “not quite strict”) scrutiny and found that Chicago has not presented anything approaching a compelling reason for its restriction. Here’s an analysis of the opinion by Josh Blackman and some follow-up commentary from Cato associate policy analyst Dave Kopel.
Gratifyingly, Judge Sykes cites the Pandora’s Box article that Josh and I published early last year in the run-up to the McDonald argument (see footnote 11 on page 31). It’s quite an honor to appear in the same footnote as Randy Barnett, Steven Calabresi, Brannon Denning, Glenn Harlan Reynolds (the Instapundit), and many other noted scholars – including Akhil Amar, who in the wake of our Obamacare debate and bet may not appreciate it as much.
Congratulations to the intrepid Alan Gura (who also litigated McDonald and Heller v. District of Columbia) and to all the citizens of Chicago!