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CU Regents Vote to Appeal Court Decision

University of Colorado RegentsWhat do you do when the Colorado Court of Appeals summarily dismisses the entire basis of your legal argument and hands the opposition a legal victory they didn’t even have to show up for?  What do you do when you’ve been so royally embarrassed by the court system that a neighboring school decides to rescind their pending policy so they don’t end up in your situation? You appeal to the state Supreme Court, of course.

Yesterday, the regents of the University of Colorado (CU) in voted 5-4 to appeal the court’s decision to overturn their campus gun bans.  In other words, they’re throwing a temper tantrum because the court decided the school’s board of regents didn’t have the authority to override state law.  (The ruling does not apply to private schools because they are not under the jurisdiction of the state, and their campuses are not public property.)  Specifically, the court ruled:

The statute’s plain language applies to “all areas of the state” and does not specify public universities in its list of exceptions. § 18-12-214. Had the legislature intended to exempt universities, it knew how to do so.

To justify the ban, the Colorado state legislature would have needed to revise the Concealed Carry Act of 2003.  They have not done so, nor should they.  Reinstatement of the ban would necessarily contradict state law, and have the unintended consequence of “granting the Regents immunity from legislation unless a statute expressly and unequivocally provides that it applies to the University.”  That’s quite a price to pay to ease the minds of insecure administrators.

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