Opponents of HB2 – the real issue
July 8, 2013 1 Comment
Opponents of House Bill 2 argued today that it should be declared unconstitutionally vague, but didn’t spend much time describing what makes the law vague. Rather than vagueness, their real issue appears to be that they disagree with the law allowing open carry. It also appears they are pushing for registration of anyone carrying a gun under any circumstances. Regardless of how Judge Kidd rules, the plaintiffs will have an uphill battle because those are matters of legislative, rather than judicial concern.
The plaintiffs also asked for a continuation of the temporary restraining order until the legislature comes back into session. I wasn’t sure what to make of this request as the proper remedy (assuming that the Court were to find HB2 unconstitutionally vague), would be an injunction. I suspect the reason behind asking for what amounts to a perpetual restraining order instead of an injunction is the injunction would be a final order subject to appeal.
Anyone that has followed this case will remember that the State’s previous appeal of the TRO resulted in a dismissal at the Mississippi Supreme Court on procedural grounds. If Judge Kidd enters an injunction, the case will be ripe for appeal. If a temporary restraining order is entered, technically an appeal could be viewed as procedurally defective again. However, a TRO for the period of time requested by the plaintiffs would be equally defective given the time restraints of Rule 65(b) of the Mississippi Rules of Civil Procedure.
At the end of the hearing, Judge Kidd extended the temporary restraining order until Friday, July 12 and stated that he would enter a written opinion on or before that date. Either way, this case will be back before the Mississippi Supreme Court in the near future.
As a side note, somehow I missed the opportunity to meet Kingfish from JacksonJambalaya.com. He tweeted the hearing and you can find a good summary of the events if you follow @Kingfish1935 on twitter. I am not sure how I missed him as I am fairly certain he was the only person in the room using a blackberry 10 instead of an Iphone, Ipad or Samsung device.