Oregon State Files Gun Control Measure 114 Brief In Appeal Court Asserting Its Constitutionality

After the Oregon Court of Appeal motion by gun owners to dismiss the State of Oregon’s motion to appeal the Harney Court Judgment finding Measure 114 unconstitutional was dismissed- as the appeal was delayed by transcript error corrections, the state has now filed its brief in the main appeal.

The state’s brief details six assignments of error and argues that Measure 114 meets constitutional muster and that the trial court erred, turning the constitutional legal standards “on their head.”


Oregon Measure 114 Court Proceedings So Far

Approved by 50.7% of voters in November 2022, Measure 114 sets rules for gun ownership and:

  • Limits the magazine capacity of guns to 10 or fewer rounds.
  • In terms of the “Charleston Loophole,” a criminal background check must be completed, not just initiated.
  • Requires a permit to buy a gun


The measure was challenged by two Harney County gun owners a week before the law was to take effect at the end of 2022 in the Harney County Court. They contested the permit requirement and the magazine capacity limit.

Harney County Judge Robert Raschio issued an emergency injunction, which stopped the measure from taking effect, holding a six-day bench trial on the merits of the suit. In November 2023 the court found the measure’s two major provisions, permits, and magazine capacity,  violate the state constitution and infringed on the constitutionally protected right to bear arms.

Raschio said the state failed to show the provisions would promote public safety, despite arguments by state lawyers that the 114 regulations were intended to reduce homicides, mass shootings, and suicides. The state lost its attempt to reinstate gun control Measure 114.

Robert A. Koch, Oregon’s  Assistant Attorney General, said of the Las Vegas shooter, “According to the trial court, the use of large-capacity magazines to kill and injure hundreds in mere minutes was irrelevant. That is baseless.”


Oregon State Argument In Appeal Seeks To Underpin Constitutionality Of Measure 114

Contending that Raschio wrongly excluded data available on the public safety impacts of the Measure 114 regulations, the state urged the appellate court to not make the same mistake.

They aver that, insofar as Measure 114 regulates protected weapons at all, it sets out reasonable regulations to promote public safety that don’t interfere with the individual’s right to bear arms for self-defense unduly. They have asked the Appeal court to reverse the trial court’s judgments.

The state says that the Harney County Circuit Judge turned “legal standards on their head,” as written case law supports the constitutionality of  Measure 114 and its rules. Their brief indicates that Raschio abrogated the policy-making authority that belongs to the Legislature, and therefore the people.


Friends Of The Court In Measure 114 Motion

Various groups have joined the proceedings as friends of the court.  Gun safety lobbyists and faith-based organizations including Lift Every Voice Oregon (LEVO) and others have filed amicus briefs.

The Alliance for Gun Responsibility, Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, Gun Owners for Responsible Ownership, March for Our Lives, and Oregon Alliance for Gun Safety have consent to file briefs and the following organizations have already done so:

  1. Albina Ministerial Alliance.
  2. Ceasefire Oregon.
  3. Central Oregon Gun Safety Advocates.
  4. Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon.
  5. The Jewish Federation of Greater Portland.
  6. The League of Women Voters of Oregon.
  7. The Muslim Educational Trust.
  8. Viva Inclusive Migrant Network.


The two Harney County gun owners who initially brought the challenge against Measure 114 now have until July 26 to file their response in the Appeal Court.

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