Friday, June 28, 2024

SAF Files Appellants Brief in Challenge of Cook County Gun Ban

The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) has filed an appellants brief with the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in the continuing challenge of the ban on so-called “assault weapons” in Cook County, Illinois.

Joining SAF in its appeal from U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois are the Firearms Policy Coalition and two private citizens, Cutberto Viramontes and Christopher Khaya. They are represented by attorneys David H. Thompson, Peter A. Patterson and William V. Bergstrom with Cooper & Kirk, PLLC, Washington, D.C. The case, filed originally in 2021, is known as Viramontes v. Cook County.

“The question presented in this case is straightforward,” noted SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb, “whether the Second Amendment permits the government to ban the best-selling rifles in America and similar semiautomatic firearms erroneously labeled as ‘assault weapons.’ We maintain the answer to that clearly is no.”

“Modern semiautomatic rifles are commonly used for all kinds of lawful purposes,” said SAF Executive Director Adam Kraut. “While millions of Americans own tens of millions of them, such rifles are used in a tiny fraction of all homicides, according to FBI data. They are used for self-defense, hunting, predator control, competition and recreation, and there can be no doubt they are protected by the Second Amendment.”

The case has actually been “on hold” for the past couple of years, during which the Supreme Court handed down the 2022 Bruen decision, and the Illinois Legislature passed a statewide ban on so-called “assault weapons” in January 2023. Plaintiffs had asked the court to stay the case pending resolution of the Illinois ban’s constitutionality, but the court declined to grant a stay.

“It’s time for a resolution to this case,” Kraut observed

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The Second Amendment Foundation ( is the nation’s oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the Constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, SAF has grown to more than 720,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control.