Earlier this year legislators in Mississippi passed House Bill 2 which says adults don’t need a permit to carry a gun that’s not concealed. Governor Phil Bryant signed the bill into law and the measure would go into effect July 1st.
However, Hinds County Circuit Court Judge Winston Kidd temporarily blocked the legislation on June 28th after the local district attorney sued the state. Kidd told legislators he believes the law is too vague to be constitutional.
The judge had originally scheduled a hearing to discuss the law and injunction for Monday, July 7th. But this past weekend, Kidd decided to make the injunction permanent. Which means the bill will be blocked from becoming a law barring intervention by a higher court.
Previously, the Mississippi Supreme Court had declined to make a ruling on the injunction, claiming they didn’t have the power to stop it prior to the hearing. Due to these recent developments it seems likely that the Supreme Court will hear the case.
Governor Phil Bryant told reporters that:
“I think it’s going to go to the Supreme Court,” Bryant said. “I think the Supreme Court’s going to uphold the Legislature and House Bill 2. I don’t think a judge in a particular county ought to be able to overrule the Legislature, I’m not particularly singling out that judge, but if you can go to a particular county and get a judge to say, ‘I’m going to hold an injunction against that law,’ then couldn’t you do it for every law that you disagree with?”
According to WAPT,
“Law enforcement officials will be required to enforce a vague law which will result in either the law enforcement officer’s life being at risk or the general public’s life being at risk,” Kidd wrote in his ruling. “The court cannot identify any potential harm which might be caused to the state by granting the injunction.”
Kidd said the injunction will delay House Bill 2 from taking effect until the Mississippi Legislature amends or clarifies it during the next session.