Pittsburgh Mayor Declares Intent to Ban Guns in Violation of State Law

Opinion

Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto
Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto

Fairfax, VA – -(Ammoland.com)- Last week, we reported that it was likely that sweeping gun control measures would be proposed in Pittsburgh. Today, December 14, 2018, Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto held a press conference to propose a trio of anti-gun city ordinances that, if enacted, would constitute a direct violation of Pennsylvania’s state firearms preemption law and Pennsylvania Supreme Court precedent.

At the event, Peduto was joined by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf, who benefitted from $500,000 in spending from Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety during his 2018 re-election bid, and City Council members Corey O’Connor and Erika Strassburger.

Not content to spearhead his own city’s violation of state law, Peduto called for municipalities throughout the country to ignore state statutes duly enacted by their residents’ elected representatives. A press release from the mayor’s office chronicling the conference explained, “Mayor Peduto has asked cities around the country to support Pittsburgh’s measures and/or introduce similar legislation to create nationwide momentum behind the critically needed gun changes.”

Councilmember O’Connor, who purportedly authored the anti-gun proposals, took a similar tack, stating that Pittsburgh “must seize the opportunity to make a real difference by partnering with other municipalities in the Commonwealth and cities across America to enact” gun restrictions. Councilmember Strassburger also encouraged the municipal lawlessness, stating, “I hope more cities across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the entire nation will join Pittsburgh in this critical effort.”

The three legislative proposals are a total ban on commonly-owned semi-automatic firearmsa total ban on several types of common firearms accessories and standard capacity magazines, and the development of a procedure to confiscate an individual’s firearms without due process of law.

Under the proposed semi-automatic ban, it would be “unlawful to manufacture, sell, purchase, transport, carry, store, or otherwise hold in one’s possession” a firearm defined as an “assault weapon.”

The legislation defines “assault weapon” by listing several models of commonly owned semi-automatic firearms, including the Colt AR-15 and certain configurations of the Ruger Mini-14. Moreover, the legislation goes on to add to the definition of “assault weapon” semi-automatic rifles, pistols, and shotguns that meet a certain set of criteria.

The prohibition criteria for rifles is the following:

                a. The firearm is a semiautomatic rifle that has an ability to accept a detachable

magazine and has at least two of the following:

i. A folding or telescoping stock;

ii. A pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the

weapon;

iii. A bayonet mount;

iv. A flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to accommodate a flash

suppressor; and

v. A grenade launcher;

Pistols would be judged under the following criteria:

b. The firearm is a semiautomatic pistol that has an ability to accept a detachable

magazine and has at least two of the following:

i. An ammunition magazine that attaches to the pistol outside of the pistol

grip;

ii. A threaded barrel capable of accepting a barrel extender, flash

suppressor, forward handgrip or silencer;

iii. A shroud that is attached to, or partially or completely encircles, the

barrel and that permits the shooter to hold the firearm with the non-trigger

hand without being burned;

iv. A manufactured weight of 50 ounces or more when the pistol is

unloaded; and

v. A semiautomatic version of an automatic firearm;

The following shotguns would banned:

c. The firearm is a semiautomatic shotgun that has at least two of the following:

i. A folding or telescoping stock;

ii. A pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the

weapon;

iii. A fixed magazine capacity in excess of five rounds; and

iv. An ability to accept a detachable magazine;

The legislation would also prohibit the possession of machine guns lawfully registered under the National Firearms Act.

The legislative proposal targeting common firearms accessories would ban the possession of firearms magazines “that [have] the capacity of, or can be readily restored or converted to accept, more than 10 rounds of ammunition.” The ordinance would also ban any semi-automatic centerfire rifle that can accept a detachable magazine and is equipped with either a pistol grip, thumbhole stock, folding or telescoping stock, or a forward pistol grip (among other items).

Both pieces of legislation impose severe penalties on those who refuse to submit to the city’s unlawful mandates. Those who do not comply “shall be fined $1,000 and costs for each offense, and in default of payment thereof, may be imprisoned for not more than 90 days.” Moreover, the proposals provide that “[e]ach day of a continuing violation of or failure to comply… shall constitute and separate and distinct offense.” Meaning that otherwise law-abiding individuals who fail to comply with the ordinances would face potential financial ruin.

The final proposal would empower law enforcement to search for and confiscate an individual’s firearms without due process.

Acting on merely a petition offered by a law enforcement official or family or household member a court could issue an order for an individual’s firearms to be seized. The individual would have no opportunity to speak or present evidence on their own behalf prior to confiscation.

The Pennsylvania General Assembly has made clear that firearms laws are a state matter and that it is unlawful for the state’s political subdivisions to regulate firearms. 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 6120, concerning the “Limitation on the regulation of firearms and ammunition,” states,

No county, municipality or township may in any manner regulate the lawful ownership, possession, transfer or transportation of firearms, ammunition or ammunition components when carried or transported for purposes not prohibited by the laws of this Commonwealth.

The language of the statute is crystal clear. Municipalities like Pittsburgh may not pass their own firearms regulations.

However, the simple statute wasn’t simple enough for the reading challenged lawmakers of Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.

In the 1996 case Ortiz v. Pennsylvania, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania settled the question as to whether Pittsburgh and Philadelphia could restrict commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms. In finding that they could not, the court stated,

Because the ownership of firearms is constitutionally protected, its regulation is a matter of statewide concern. The constitution does not provide that the right to bear arms shall not be questioned in any part of the commonwealth except Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, where it may be abridged at will, but that it shall not be questioned in any part of the commonwealth. Thus, regulation of firearms is a matter of concern in all of Pennsylvania, not merely in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, and the General Assembly, not city councils, is the proper forum for the imposition of such regulation.

Another portion of the opinion described Pittsburgh’s position as “frivolous.”

In the 2009 case National Rifle Association v. Philadelphia, the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania came to the same conclusion after Philadelphia ignored the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania’s 1996 ruling and enacted a ban on commonly-owned firearms and a lost or stolen reporting ordinance. Citing Pennsylvania’s firearms preemption statute and the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania’s decision in Ortiz, the Commonwealth Court struck down the local firearms ordinances. Philadelphia appealed the case to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania and was denied.

In pursuing their local gun control ordinances, Peduto and his anti-gun allies have demonstrated an extraordinary indifference to state law, judicial precedents, and the taxpaying constituents who will foot the bill for this political grandstanding. NRA stands ready to use all available legal avenues to ensure that the residents of Pittsburgh are never subject to these unconstitutional and unlawful proposals.


National Rifle Association Institute For Legislative Action (NRA-ILA)

About:
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org

  • 26 thoughts on “Pittsburgh Mayor Declares Intent to Ban Guns in Violation of State Law

    1. A couple of Pittsburgh citizens need to place this ahole under citizens arrest, which is their right and constitutional authority. Have enough armed citizens with them to control any cops that want to screw around with them…

      1. I agree this ass wants are city to turn into Chicago. How can anyone get elected into any State or Federal position if your not all in Constitutionally, How does this happen. Now what are we going to do about this guy, we need to arrest him. Or run him out of office. We all need to attend the public hearing on this bill.

    2. Until the citizens charge and convict these politicians with tyranny and see them imprisoned, this will continue.
      Band together and get an attorney NOW and file the charges!!!!
      It is not good enough to get the law overturned, the politician who knowingly and willingly violates the constitution MUST be prosecuted and jailed- this is the only way to scare them from continually breaking the “supreme law”!!

    3. ✅ News article commonsenseevaluation “FBI Data Shows Armed Citizens Have 94% Success rate Stopping Would e Mass Shooters” Let’s note that France has nearly the most stringent gun control laws on earth. Epic fail. He fought and the law won. My opinion. The second amendment was never more important than now. We are not in a civil war, we are in the midst of a communist style overthrow of America. News article. Never Give Up Your Guns
      http://freesites.ourchurch.com/a/AncientHebrewScriptures/?page_id=86

    4. Let them Nazi’s come for my guns. Ill gladly accept death then to give up my guns. Hope more people feel the same way I do.

    5. PA hunters and sportsmen keep voting for Democrats. Even stupid steel workers and miners who have lost their jobs as a result of EPA and China trade agreement signed by Democrat Clinton. So….they keep voting against their own benefit time and time again. Republican governor candidate lost by 800,000 thousand votes. I guess PA voters like high taxes, loss of gun rights and unemployment. Hard to overcome stupidity. They re-elected Casey… who has repeatedly submitted legislation to ban nasty guns at the federal level. Keep voting this way PA hunters.. I have got a clue for you. Hunting was not and is not a guaranteed constitutional right…. NEVER HAS BEEN NEVER WILL. Kiss your hunting rifle good by.

      1. Kahn, those gun owners are fudds. They’re more dangerous than people realize. They work against the interests of the rest of us gun owners, because they’re idiots. You hit the nail on the head!

    6. Has anyone thought of a SECOND GETTSBURG, Pa is working hard for one but the problem is that BLOOMBERG, WOLF, PEDUTO, O’CONNOR, and STRASSBURGER won’t be there to be part of the death listings as they will send somebody in their place!!!!!!! I said when Wolf got in as governor he would destroy Pa he isn’t letting me down and neither is the other morons that are backing him!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m glad I moved out of Pa as the virus is spreading fast!!!!!!!!!

    7. Tyranny. Gun control? By making normal guns illegal, thus making their owners felons? Gun control or people control? Didn’t the British try this a long time ago in a place not very far away? Anyone who would disarm the public is either misinformed or just plain evil. They don’t see us a citizens anymore, just subjects and the first step to absolute control is disarmament of the people. Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Idi Amine etc.. They all did this first. It is the only way they could have gotten away with their murderous scheme. Civil disobedience may still be viable–maybe. Right up to the time when they come to take your gear.. Isn’t that how the first war for independence got started? Read the declaration of independence. Know why it happened. Know how it started. It started when the Brits tried to disarm the people by taking the armory at Concord. They tried to disarm the people. These people are illegal. They swore an oath to protect the constitution and now they are subverting it. Sedation. Hitler pulled this kind of stunt just before WW 2. He registered guns “for a kinder, gentler Nation” Then he confiscated them-ALL. Any enforcement officer or politician who goes along with their cra* is just a guilty as any SS storm trooper during WW 2. I seem to remember that they were hung after the war–the ones that survived the war I mean. Pray for peace, arm up, carry on.

    8. Where the Pa dept. of Justice? These elected officials are outright criminals in their attempt to supersede state law. They should be prosecuted, removed from office and jailed just as you and i would be.

    9. It doesn’t matter what federal or state law says if democrats disagree. They can do whatever they want with impunity and your tax dollars. Republican lawmakers are too weak to do anything about it. Thanks for voting for democrat liars, cheats, thieves and traitors. The message is clear.

    10. Lots of folks commenting on this blog talk about how the opposition doesn’t “get” that making these laws only affects law abiding people. They do “get” it. They do understand that criminal elements will fill the power vacuum. They want this. What better way to install a police state? Make the people think it’s their own idea.

    11. With the politicians listed as being at this even and supporting it, federal charges need to be brought against them. It is a crime for 2 or more elected officials,police or any other form of an agent of the government to conspire to remove rights from an individual

    12. If the law goes on the books it will be time to start breaking their windows to get their attention. If that does not work then further escalation may be in order.

      1. If it comes down to further escalation, be sure to follow the rules of 4GW and enlist the help of the public, and also portray the actions of the gun-grabbers in the most negative light possible. Hearts and minds. Be sure to explain to people why and how “an armed society is a polite society”.

        It also wouldn’t hurt to educate the public there how gun control in the 20th century ALWAYS and inevitably leads to GENOCIDE.

        To learn more about 4GW, read “4th Generation Warfare Handbook” by William Lind and LTC Gregory Thiele, USMC (Ret.)

        Like I said elsewhere, a Second American Revolution is coming. Anytime the powers that be have tried to disarm the people and deny them a voice and representation in self-government, we have fought back and made it right again. Study the ‘Battle of Athens (TN)’. Know that we are the masters of our nation, we only need act on our beliefs and morals.

    13. NRA will do NOTHING to stop the tidal wave of antigun measures that are coming. Time to gear up, join your local citizen militia, train, and prepare for the Second American Revolution… IT’S COMING.

    14. Are you willing to DIE for your FREEDOOM?
      I think they’ll be surprised one day by how many of us still are willing to DIE!
      Another Un-Civil war is on the way!

    15. The retarded liberals strike again. always disarm the honest citizen so the dishonest citizen can prey upon them. This is the Bloomberg Utopia, as he sits behind locked gates and armed guards, being the ultimate hypocrite.

      1. Well, what did you expect from him ? He is a card carrying capo of the Khazarian Mafia intent on total control. If you will notice, about 100% of the big whigs in the gun control lobby are Khazarian Mafia members. And because of the “Pledge” that ex-Sen. Cynthia McKinney told us about, no one gets campaign money unless they sign the Pledge to always support the Khazarian Mafia. And they are very closely aligned with the Italian Mafia, and other organizations of organized crime around the world. They have no allegiance to anyone except themselves. At least we know who they are now. Don’t give up one bullet. Their next move will be to hire foreign troops to disarm us, and bribe local low IQ goons to do the same. That’s what their “Sanctuary cities” are all about.

        1. P, PA gun owners, dealers and mfgrs,
          Move to a state where you will be welcomed. This will reduce the tax base in P, PA to the point where these bastards will be starved out, then you can return, if you wish, to P, PA and install a political body that will perform their jobs as intended by the Constitution.
          I make this statement as humor but, as we all know, oft times an element of truth makes humor the most meaningful .
          Think about it.

    Leave a Comment 26 Comments

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *