Missouri Senate committee approves bill that nullifies federal gun laws and prohibits state courts from enforcing them; allows for suits against state judges who enforce such laws

Yesterday the Missouri Senate General Laws Committee gave its approval to HB 1439, a bill that unilaterally declares void “federal statutes, executive orders, administrative orders, court orders, rules, regulations, or other actions which restrict or prohibit the manufacture, ownership, and use of firearms.”

While such attempted nullification bills have become more commonplace in state legislatures in recent years, Missouri’s HB 1439 includes provisions that prohibit state court judges from recognizing such laws or federal court orders: “It shall be the duty of the courts…of this state to protect the rights of law-abiding citizens to keep and bear arms within the borders of this state and to protect these rights from the infringements defined in section 1.322.”

No “public officer or employee” would be permitted to enforce or attempt to enforce those federal gun laws/court orders. Additionally, were a judge to do so he or she “shall be liable to the injured party in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress…Neither sovereign nor official or qualified immunity shall be an affirmative defense in such cases.”

The bill now likely goes to the Senate Rules Committee before advancing to the floor.