Oregon Attorney General asks supreme court to review judge decision

PORTLAND, Ore. (KGW) — Measure 114, Oregon’s voter-approved gun control measure, won’t go into effect Thursday, Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum said, after a state judge in Harney County blocked the measure Tuesday — just hours after a federal judge ruled the measure could go into effect.

The ruling by Harney County Circuit Judge Robert S. Raschio was based on a different case than the one brought before a federal judge. The case Raschio ruled on was brought by Gun Owners of America and challenged Measure 114 under Oregon’s state constitution. Raschio set a hearing for Dec. 13 on a preliminary injunction, according to a report in the Oregonian.

“Since state judges are elected, although they’re going to be doing their best, they’ll be responsive to their constituents to a certain extent because you can be voted out of office,” Lewis & Clark Law School professor Tung Yin said of the ruling. “One would expect in the eastern part of the state judges would be more receptive to gun right claims.”

Rosenblum said the Oregon Department of Justice would petition to the state supreme court.

“We will petition to the Oregon Supreme Court ASAP, seeking to align the result in our state courts with the federal court’s well-reasoned and thoughtful decision,” Rosenblum said in a series of tweets.

The measure, which Oregon voters passed with 50.7% of the vote in November’s midterm election, bans magazines that hold more than 10 rounds, requires a permit to purchase a gun, and requires a background check to be completed prior to a gun sale or transfer.

Raschio’s ruling came about three hours after U.S. District Judge Karin J. Immergut’s ruled Tuesday morning that Measure 114 would go into effect as planned on Dec. 8, with a 30-day delay for the permit requirement portion of the measure.

In the 43-page ruling, Immergut granted a delay of 30 days for the permitting process portion of the measure after the Oregon Department of Justice said Sunday that the state wouldn’t be ready to implement that portion of the measure by Dec. 8. That ruling meant Oregonians wouldn’t have to obtain a permit before buying a gun for 30 days once the measure took effect.

Immergut denied temporary restraining orders for the magazine capacity limit and background check portions of the measure.

On Friday, Immergut heard oral arguments in a case on whether the measure violates Americans’ constitutionally protected right to bear arms. Plaintiffs in the lawsuit included the Oregon Firearms Federation, the owner of a Marion County gun store and the Sherman County Sheriff. After hearing the arguments Friday, Immergut said she’d issue a ruling this week.

“The burden imposed by Measure 114 on the core Second Amendment right of self-defense is minimal,” Immergut wrote in the ruling issued Tuesday.

READ: Federal judge’s ruling on Measure 114

On Sunday night, the Oregon Department of Justice asked Immergut to postpone the permit requirement of the measure for two months to give law enforcement more time to implement it.

In Sunday’s letter requesting the delay for the permit requirement, the DOJ said other parts of the measure should take effect as scheduled on Dec. 8, “including the process for applying for permits, the restrictions on large capacity magazines, and the requirement that background checks must be completed — and not just requested — before firearms can be transferred.”

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