The U.S. Supreme Court today set the table for its first decision in a Second Amendment case in nearly a decade today when it issued an order in the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. New York City for the parties to prepare for oral arguments on December 2. New York City had asked the Court to declare the case moot because the city has changed the law being challenged and now claims all of the issues raised in the lawsuit have been settled. Former Solicitor General Paul Clement, who represents the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, begs to differ and says there are still relevant issues left unaddressed by the city’s changes. What’s more, says Clement, is that the city could change their law again once the Court dismisses the case.
Today, the justices informed the parties to be prepared to argue both the issue of mootness and the merits of the case, which hinge on a New York City law restricting the transportation of legally owned firearms. Federal courts have upheld the law, but gun control advocates are so terrified of a reversal by the Supreme Court that they convinced New York City and New York State to change both local and state law in an attempt to avoid judicial scrutiny by the final arbiter of the justice system. Five Democrat senators even threatened the Court with restructuring if it moved forward with the case. Gun control advocates are less concerned about this particular law than they are with a Supreme Court decision that could inform courts to use the highest level of judicial scrutiny when examining the constitutionality of gun control laws nationwide, not just in New York. There’s also the possibility that the Supreme Court will use the case to address the carrying of firearms, not just the transportation of guns, though there’s also speculation about the Court taking an incrementalist approach to the right to carry. If that’s the case, the Court has the perfect vehicle to do so in a case called Rogers v. Grewal, which deals with the restrictive “may issue” carry laws in the state of New Jersey.. but that’s a topic for another day.
Joining me on Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co. today for a wide-ranging conversation about the SCOTUS order and the future of the case is 2nd Amendment attorney and scholar Stephen Halbrook. We also have an armed citizen story from Georgia, a career criminal whose latest run-in with the law ended up with him flipping a stolen police SUV, and a Michigan family who are headed home thanks to the kindness of a Miami-Dade police officer and his colleagues on the force.
You can also get the show as a podcast at Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, and Townhall podcasts. Thanks for watching, listening, and spreading the word!