Rahimi Decision:
The Clarence Thomas Dissent

By Dean Weingarten. July 1, 2024

Justice Clarence Thomas has written a wonderful dissent in the Rahimi case, released on June 21, 2024, almost exactly two years after the clear and well written Bruen opinion.

The Rahimi opinion has been released by the Supreme Court. It is an eight to one decision with Justice Clarence Thomas dissenting. In spite of the terrible facts and unsympathetic defendant in the case, Rahimi was not a significant win for those who want the American population disarmed. It was a very narrow decision, based on the narrow facts of the case, so the opinion while not wonderful, is not as damaging as some think. The Supreme Court opinion, written by Chief Justice Roberts, is narrow, as applied to the Rahimi case. It is extremely limited. From the opinion, page 1:

Held: When an individual has been found by a court to pose a credible threat to the physical safety of another, that individual may be temporarily disarmed consistent with the Second Amendment. Pp. 5–17.

(a) Since the Founding, the Nation's firearm laws have included regulations to stop individuals who threaten physical harm to others from misusing firearms. As applied to the facts here, Section 922(g)(8) fits within this tradition.

Justice Clarence Thomas may be the most well reasoned and disciplined Justice on the Supreme Court. In his dissenting opinion on Rahimi, Thomas shows the weakness in the majority opinion. His dissent gives Constitutionalists and Originalists a roadmap of how to argue decisions on other cases going forward, including future challenges to the ban on guns coming from domestic violence restraining orders, indeed from the entire Lautenberg Amendment disaster. .....


Back to Top