Judge Jay Bybee, Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals

Judge Jay Bybee

Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals

Jay Scott Bybee was born in October 1953 in Oakland, California. He earned an undergraduate degree from Brigham Young University, and received his Juris Doctor from that school’s Reuben Clark Law School. He clerked at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

He spent four years in private practice then went to work for the U.S. Department of Justice, in the Office of Legal Policy and then in the Civil Division. He served as Associate Counsel to President George H.W. Bush.

He spent eight years as a professor of law at the Paul M. Hebert Law Center at Louisiana State University, and later was a professor at the William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Bybee was appointed Assistant Attorney General, leading the Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice. He was appointed by President George W. Bush to a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He was confirmed by the Senate and received his commission in March 2003.

He is married to Diana Greer, and is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He is an Eagle Scout.

In the News…

Reversing a prior Ninth Circuit decision that struck down a Hawaii firearm restriction as unconstitutional, an en banc panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Americans do not have a right to carry guns in public.

In a 127-page opinion for the majority, Judge Jay Bybee wrote, “There is no right to carry arms openly in public; nor is any such right within the scope of the Second Amendment.”

Looking back on 700 years of legal history dating back to 14th century England, seven judges in the majority found “overwhelming evidence” that the law has never given people “an unfettered right to carry weapons in public spaces.”

“The Second Amendment did not contradict the fundamental principle that the government assumes primary responsibility for defending persons who enter our public spaces,” Judge Bybee wrote. “The states do not violate the Second Amendment by asserting their longstanding English and American rights to prohibit certain weapons from entering those public spaces as means of providing ‘domestic tranquility’ and forestalling ‘domestic violence.’”

By upholding state laws that restrict carrying guns in public, the Ninth Circuit joined three other circuit courts that have issued similar rulings: the Second, Third and Fourth Circuits. Meanwhile, the D.C. Circuit and Seventh Circuit have struck down state laws that ban carrying guns in public. That makes the dispute ripe for Supreme Court review.

Contact this Leader…

Did you pray for Judge Bybee today? You can let him know at:

The Honorable Jay Bybee
Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
The James R. Browning Courthouse
95 7th Street
San Francisco, CA 94103


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