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- Court: Man can't be retried for murder after mistrial ruling
- Michigan Democrats back Nessel for state attorney general
- Question of sales tax on online purchases goes to high court
- Supreme Court again refuses to hear Blagojevich appeal
- Court hears case alleging unconstitutional 6th District gerrymander
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- Arkansas wants court to dissolve stay for death row prisoner
- TransCanada doesn't have to pay landowner attorneys
- Martin Shkreli cries in court, is sentenced to 7 years for securities fraud
The Commonwealth Court said the procedure the Republican-controlled Legislature used to enact the law in the final days of last year's session violated the state constitution. The ruling came after dozens of municipalities had already repealed their gun laws.
Under the law, gun owners no longer had to show they were harmed by a local ordinance to challenge it, and it let "membership organizations" like the NRA sue on behalf of any Pennsylvania member. The law also allowed successful challengers to seek damages.
The NRA's lobbying arm had called the measure "the strongest firearms pre-emption statute in the country."
Five Democratic legislators and the cities of Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Lancaster sued to block the law, saying it was passed improperly. The GOP defendants included House Speaker Mike Turzai and then-Gov. Tom Corbett, who lost his bid for re-election last year.
Thursday's ruling sends "a very strong message to the General Assembly that the old way of doing business just isn't acceptable anymore," said Mark McDonald, press secretary to Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter. "The law requires and the public expects transparency, deliberation and public debate."
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