Justice Department sues Missouri over expansive gun-rights law

The Justice Department sued Missouri on Wednesday over a state law that declares several federal gun laws “invalid.”

Missouri House Bill 85, which was signed into law by the governor last June, allows law enforcement officers to be penalized with fines for attempting to enforce five categories of federal gun laws, including laws on gun registration and confiscation. 

The complaint, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri seeking declaratory and injunctive relief prohibiting the legislation’s enforcement, argues the law is unconstitutional.

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said in a statement that the law “impedes criminal law enforcement operations in Missouri.”

“A state cannot simply declare federal laws invalid,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Brian Boynton, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Division, in a statement. “This act makes enforcement of federal firearms laws difficult and strains the important law enforcement partnerships that help keep violent criminals off the street.”

Federal laws without similar Missouri laws include statutes covering weapons registration and tracking, and possession of firearms by some domestic violence offenders.

A spokesman for the Missouri Attorney General’s Office said the Justice Department on Friday dropped out of the program.

“Time and again, the Biden Administration has put partisan politics ahead of public safety,” Schmitt said in a statement in response to the lawsuit. “Make no mistake, the law is on our side in this case, and I intend to beat the Biden Administration in court once again.”

The Justice Department lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri, seeks to block the state from enforcing the law. Nearly 80% of violent crimes in Missouri are committed with guns, federal officials said.




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Paul, 37, is from Scotland in the UK, but currently lives and works in Bangkok. Paul has worked in different industries such as telemarketing, retail, hospitality, farming, insurance, and teaching, where he works now. He teaches at an all-girls High School in Bangkok. “It’s a lot of work, but I love my job.” Paul has an active interest in politics. His reason for writing for FBA is to offer people the facts and allow them to make up their own minds. Whilst he believes opinion columns have their place, it is also important that people can have accurate news with no bias.

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