Can state ban online purchase of ammunition?


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bushmaster1313
February 9, 2013, 09:17 PM
If it is legal under Federal law to purchase ammunition from an out of state online dealer, can a state prohibit such a transaction by requiring all ammunition purchases to be face to face?

See: New Jersey proposed bill S2500:

http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2012/Bills/S2500/2476_I1.PDF

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Alaska444
February 9, 2013, 09:20 PM
If it is legal under Federal law to purchase ammunition from an out of state online sealer, can a state prohibit such a transaction by requiring all ammunition purchases to be face to face?

See: New Jersey proposed bill S2500:

http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2012/Bills/S2500/2476_I1.PDF
California tried to do that a couple of years ago. The Federal courts ruled it was unconstitutional.

Tom from WNY
February 9, 2013, 10:05 PM
New York is trying....

In 2014 according the SAFE act.

HankB
February 9, 2013, 11:31 PM
New York is trying....

In 2014 according the SAFE act.CMP has always been able to ship M1s and other firearms directly to qualified purchasers, without going through an FFL - I think this shipping & delivery exemption was carved out in Federal law.

But the CMP recently put out a notice that henceforth, firearms sent to New York residents will have to go through a local FFL - can any "legal eagles" explain how a new NY state law trumps established Federal law? :confused: (This isn't rhetorical; IANAL, so I really would like to know.)

Jim K
February 10, 2013, 12:18 AM
To get back to the ammunition question, yes. The state will post a public notice that their law prohibits shipping ammunition into the state to individuals. If a dealer violates that, the state can sue in federal court, which would probably mean revocation of the dealer's FFL.

Same on guns. And no, the courts generally have held that where state law is more strict than federal law, the state law applies. That was settled long ago by CA automobile emissions laws. Only in a few areas does federal law override state law, but we might see some tests coming up on marijuana laws.

Jim

jrmiddleton425
February 10, 2013, 12:31 AM
CMP has always been able to ship M1s and other firearms directly to qualified purchasers, without going through an FFL - I think this shipping & delivery exemption was carved out in Federal law.

But the CMP recently put out a notice that henceforth, firearms sent to New York residents will have to go through a local FFL - can any "legal eagles" explain how a new NY state law trumps established Federal law? :confused: (This isn't rhetorical; IANAL, so I really would like to know.)
CMP has special access to NICS. If state law requires them to ship to an FFL, that's what they do. They do it in New Jersey, also.

Capybara
February 10, 2013, 01:35 AM
We will have the same idiocy coming up soon here in California with SB53. With a Democratic supermajority here, they are just going to make it their new full time jobs throwing stuff at the wall to see if it sticks. They love wasting taxpayer money.

utbrowningman
February 10, 2013, 01:51 AM
Case law in the past has ruled that only the federal government can regulate interstate commerce. I think if it goes to the SCOTUS, the states will lose.

Solo
February 10, 2013, 04:36 AM
I love this thread.

BSA1
February 10, 2013, 11:39 AM
Without researching legal cases my guess is the Feds would would try to do it by using the Commerce Clause.

bushmaster1313
February 10, 2013, 07:23 PM
The Feds have not done it even though they could, just as they have with interstate gun purchases, requiring that they be done by or through an FFL.

The issue is that the Constitution gives only the Federal Government the power to regulate interstate commerce, and if it is legal in a state to do something face to face I do not see how the state could prohibit if done online between states.

IIRC, the California case throwing out the California ban on the online sale of handgun ammo was a state court saying the law was void for being too vague.

Twiki357
February 11, 2013, 12:25 AM
I was just wondering. If a state prohibits the interstate purchase of ammunition and a seller chooses to ignore it, exactly how would the state enforce it? It's a package going form the seller to the buyer. Assuming it is properly labeled, the shipping company would be the only monitor for compliance. If it's not labeled with the "ORD" how would anyone know?

mgkdrgn
February 11, 2013, 10:26 AM
I was just wondering. If a state prohibits the interstate purchase of ammunition and a seller chooses to ignore it, exactly how would the state enforce it? It's a package going form the seller to the buyer. Assuming it is properly labeled, the shipping company would be the only monitor for compliance. If it's not labeled with the "ORD" how would anyone know?
They wouldn't. Any more than they can find handguns being shipped via the US Mail by Non-FFL's.

But gawd help you if you run afoul of the HazMat laws, in addition to what ever other laws you are breaking. THOSE have real serious teeth ($250K fine & 5 years, per infraction), and the DOT loves making examples of people.

Bullwinkle
February 11, 2013, 02:33 PM
I believe the CA law was thrown out was because it was ambiguous. It was aimed directly at handgun ammo. So it got really gray when it got to the definition of which calibers are applicable. So, loads like 22, 38, 357, etc. could be used in both handguns and/or long guns. There was a CA sheriff who was involved in defeating this nonsense bill because of its ambiguity. I suspect the clowns in Sacramento will find a work around at some point e.g.
ammo tax.

bodam
February 11, 2013, 02:36 PM
Doesn't Mass restrict online ammo purchases?

Last time my BIL was here, he bought some and had to ship to a co-worker in NH

splithoof
February 11, 2013, 03:32 PM
California had/has an injunction against it's recent law regarding shipping "handgun" ammunition to citizens from out of state dealers. Part of the injunction centered upon the inability of the state to differentiate between ammunition primarily designed for handguns vs ammunition primarily designed for use in "rifles". The legislative cure being looked at would simply not differentiate between what type of firearm the ammunition was for, but simply prohibit ALL importation of ammunition by internet/mail order sales. Another idea would merge the requirement that all ammunition sales be done "face to face" at a specially licensed dealer, possibly along with required background checks, waiting periods, testing, and licensing of purchasers. With a super-majority of liberal socialists control of all levels of state governance, citizens are in for a rough ride. The only way to correct the problem would to be reduce Democrat power through election (unlikely) or through expensive litigation.

crazyjennyblack
February 11, 2013, 03:57 PM
After the passing of Obamacare, it looks like any government entity can do whatever it can get the votes to pass..... :uhoh:

Alizard
February 11, 2013, 04:42 PM
California tried to do that a couple of years ago. The Federal courts ruled it was unconstitutional.Because the California law was too vague. They are going to get it through eventually.

splithoof
February 11, 2013, 11:30 PM
^^^ Yes they will, IMO. That will only continue to lead to more shortages, as more Californians attempt to purchase ammo before any bans take place. On my desk is a flyer from some time ago when a major internet retailer in Arizona warned California residents to "stock up now", as they would no longer ship to the state. This time around the pro-crime crowd has learned from their past experience, and will likely draft something that will stick. On the bright side for me, it has only strengthened my desire to leave, take my tax money, and spend and contribute to another economy. Traveling out of state recently was a great experience, and cemented my resolve to escape.

Phatty
February 12, 2013, 02:47 PM
A State is not permitted by the constitution to limit the market of a particular good to its own State. If a State allows the purchase of a certain item within its borders, it must allow residents in that State to purchase the same item from other States. This rule arises out of the Commerce Clause in the Constitution. Courts have held that the delegation to Congress of the power to regulate interstate commerce was exclusive to the States, so States cannot regulate interstate commerce.

One of the only exceptions to the above rule is alcohol, the importation of which can be regulated by the States pursuant to the 21st Amendment.

M-Cameron
February 12, 2013, 07:45 PM
Doesn't Mass restrict online ammo purchases?

Last time my BIL was here, he bought some and had to ship to a co-worker in NH

legally there is nothing prohibiting a person from buying ammo online in MA....nor is there anything legally preventing a company from shipping ammo to a person in MA....

the problem is, a few years ago, our esteemed AG went on a power trip and threatened "legal action" against vendors who shipped ammo to MA.

so now most vendors wont ship to MA....even though it is perfectly legal for them to do so.

there are still some vendors who ship to MA (thankfully)...however youll have a hard time getting anyone to tell you who they are......

pseudonymity
February 13, 2013, 01:36 PM
New York is trying....

In 2014 according the SAFE act.

Not exactly - online sales would not necessarily be banned, but the ammo would have to be shipped to a registered dealer of ammo (or FFL). The NYS check for ammo would have to be completed (however that is going to work) before the ammo could be transferred.

So online sales are not banned, but receiving shipments of ammo directly from out of state would be. What is interesting about the NY ammo requirements is that the State Police will register "sellers of ammunition" and they do not have to be FFLs. Since there is no law on what that procedure is, I do not see how they could keep anybody from registering to sell ammunition, other than people that would otherwise be prohibited from possessing ammo at all.

GeoEmeritus
February 13, 2013, 02:05 PM
Re California ammo....
There is currently a proposal working it's way through the labyrinth to make the proposed restrictions apply to all ammo, thus removing the ambiguity.

LNK
February 13, 2013, 02:13 PM
Doesn't Mass restrict online ammo purchases?

Last time my BIL was here, he bought some and had to ship to a co-worker in NH
I don't know if it is a law or not, but no sellers will ship to MA, so it must be so...Anytime I need to order ammo or components, I have them shipped to a relative in a neighboring state. Good thing these states are small. Otherwise I would move out of here, wait, I am moving out of here.......:neener:

LNK

LNK
February 13, 2013, 02:14 PM
legally there is nothing prohibiting a person from buying ammo online in MA....nor is there anything legally preventing a company from shipping ammo to a person in MA....

the problem is, a few years ago, our esteemed AG went on a power trip and threatened "legal action" against vendors who shipped ammo to MA.

so now most vendors wont ship to MA....even though it is perfectly legal for them to do so.

there are still some vendors who ship to MA (thankfully)...however youll have a hard time getting anyone to tell you who they are......
Perhaps a PM would be in order. Please tell me so I can give them some business....I promise not to tell anyone else....

LNK

brickeyee
February 14, 2013, 02:44 PM
A State is not permitted by the constitution to limit the market of a particular good to its own State.

Well and good.

Now you just need someone to drag the case into Federal court.

Better start collecting pennies.

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