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What do Recent Decisions on Federal Group Prohibitions Signal for Heller’s List of Presumptively Lawful Regulations?

Posted by on October 3, 2022

In a September 19 decision in United States v. Quiroz, a judge in the Western District of Texas struck down the federal law barring those under indictment for a felony offense from receiving firearms, finding that the ban “departs from this Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation.” One notable aspect of the decision is its […]

Worrying Trends In the Lower Courts After Bruen

Posted by on September 30, 2022

There are several extremely worrying trends from what I’ve seen in the still nascent post-Bruen Second Amendment case law. These concerns don’t arise from disagreement with constitutional originalism or with the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Second Amendment. They are concerns about lower courts’ capacity (and perhaps willingness) to apply a historical method in a […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 9/26/2022

Posted by on September 26, 2022

The Supreme Court’s “Long Conference” will take place this Wednesday, September 28.   At the long conference, the justices will consider the many petitions for certiorari filed over the summer as well as remaining earlier-filed petitions.  The odds of a grant of certiorari at the long conference are especially low, if history is any guide.  Many […]

State Court Justice Questions How to Apply Bruen

Posted by on September 23, 2022

In a recent case pending before the Ohio Supreme Court, State v. Philpotts, a majority of the justices sua sponte ordered the parties to file supplemental briefs addressing Bruen’s effect on the case. The challenged Ohio law in that case bars those under indictment for violent felonies from possessing firearms pending the disposition of the […]

Litigation Highlight: Angelo v. District of Columbia

Posted by on September 21, 2022

In Antonyuk v. Bruen, a district court judge recently suggested in dicta that New York’s list of sensitive places where guns are prohibited is unconstitutional under the standard set forth in Bruen.  I summarized that opinion here, including why its analysis of sensitive places appears inconsistent with Bruen’s directive to reason by analogy to determine […]

Justice Thomas’ Dissent in Voisine and Non-Felon Prohibitions

Posted by on September 19, 2022

As litigators and judges grapple with Bruen’s historical tradition test, one issue that is sure to surface repeatedly is the status of group prohibitions on gun possession.  Notably absent from the list of “presumptively lawful” restrictions in Heller is the federal prohibition on gun possession by those convicted of domestic-violence misdemeanor offenses, codified at 18 […]

How Many States Make Up a Historical Tradition? Emerging-Consensus Doctrine and Lessons from International Law

Posted by on September 16, 2022

Bruen itself is not clear on how many laws, or laws from what time period specifically, are needed to establish a historical tradition of regulation.  The opinion tells us it is “doubtful” that three colonial-era regulations “could suffice to show a tradition of public-carry regulation,” and suggests that laws from the Founding era are accorded […]

Bruen and Mass Shootings: Same Cultural Script

Posted by on September 14, 2022

In Bruen, Justice Thomas highlights the story of a Black schoolteacher in post-bellum Maryland who was given a revolver by the local sheriff to protect his students against violence by white mobs (at 52-53). Despite the historical setting, arming teachers to address a pressing social problem of violence will sound familiar to the opinion’s contemporary […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 9/12/22

Posted by on September 12, 2022

We’re well into September, but the Supreme Court remains in summer recess and therefore there are not major updates on any previously-filed cert petitions.  We’re adding a new case to the tracker this week:  Carnes v. United States.  The question presented in Carnes is “[w]hether the government, to establish that the defendant is an ‘unlawful user’ […]

Announcing the Center’s September 23, 2022 Symposium with the NYU Law Review

Posted by on September 9, 2022

We are excited to announce that the Center will co-host a symposium in New York on September 23 in coordination with the New York University Law Review.  The theme is Gun Rights and Regulation after Bruen.   The Supreme Court’s decision in Bruen marked a fundamental shift in Second Amendment law, announcing a new methodology […]

Litigation Update: Antonyuk v. Bruen

Posted by on September 6, 2022

We previously summarized the preliminary injunction briefing in Antonyuk v. Bruen, a challenge to New York’s amended gun laws.  Following a hearing on August 23, Chief Judge Glenn T. Suddaby of the Northern District of New York denied the preliminary injunction motion and dismissed the case for lack of standing in an August 31 decision.  […]

McGraw, the Age of Majority, and the Enduring Relevance of the Second Amendment’s Prefatory Clause

Posted by on September 1, 2022

Jake recently covered the Northern District of Texas decision in Firearms Policy Coalition v. McGraw, which struck down Texas’ ban on the public carry of handguns by those under 21 years old.  In McGraw, the court reasons that the Second Amendment’s reference to a “well regulated militia” means that the amendment must necessarily protect the […]

Federal Judge Strikes Down Texas Gun Law Governing Under-21-Year-Olds

Posted by on August 31, 2022

Last week, in Firearms Policy Coalition v. McCraw, Judge Mark Pittman of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas struck down a Texas law that prohibited those under 21 from carrying handguns in public. The case illustrates many of the hallmarks that are likely to characterize post-Bruen litigation over contemporary gun laws. […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 8/29/22

Posted by on August 29, 2022

The Supreme Court’s summer recess continues, without any major new developments or cert petitions on the Second Amendment front.  The four cases that the Court GVR-ed post-Bruen continue to work their way through the lower courts.  The general trend has been to remand these cases back to the district-court level so that those courts can apply […]

Does Bruen Herald the End of Constitutional Strict-Scrutiny Amendments?

Posted by on August 26, 2022

This November, voters in Iowa will weigh in on a proposed state constitutional amendment that would make all gun regulations subject to strict scrutiny.  The full text of the proposed amendment, which was approved by the state legislature in early 2021, is as follows (emphasis added): The right of the people to keep and bear […]

Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings, Abortion, and the Second Amendment

Posted by on August 24, 2022

During her March confirmation hearing, Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson (who did not decide any Second Amendment cases as a district or appellate judge) was asked by Republican Senator Chuck Grassley:  “Do you believe the individual right to keep and bear arms is a fundamental right?”  Justice Jackson responded that “the Supreme Court has established that […]

Assault Weapons Bans after Bruen

Posted by on August 22, 2022

Assault weapons bans are certain to receive a great deal of attention post-Bruen.  Already, a federal judge in Colorado granted an emergency TRO application and enjoined the assault weapons ban in Superior, Colorado until November—albeit without argument from the town.  The House also passed a federal assault weapons ban earlier this month, although the bill […]

Litigation Highlight: Antonyuk v. Bruen

Posted by on August 19, 2022

10 days after New York passed a set of revised licensing and gun laws post-Bruen (known colloquially as the Concealed Carry Improvement Act, or CCIA), those laws were challenged in federal court.  The case is Antonyuk et al. v. Bruen, Docket No. 1:22-cv-00734 in the Northern District of New York.  Chief Judge Glenn T. Suddaby […]

Scholarship Highlight: Recent Articles on Bruen, PLCAA Immunity, and Founding-Era Animal Attacks

Posted by on August 17, 2022

Today we’re highlighting a few new pieces of Second Amendment scholarship.  The first, an article by Michael Smith, provides a comprehensive critical evaluation of Bruen and its historical-analogy test.  The second, a student note by Nathan Harp, gives an overview of state AG lawsuits under PLCAA’s predicate exception—helpful background for understanding recent suits brought under […]

SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 8/15/22

Posted by on August 15, 2022

There are not many updates on the Supreme Court front, as the summer recess rolls on.  A few more of the cases we are tracking will be considered at the Long Conference in late September, including Morin, Baldea, and Torcivia.  The four cases that the Court GVR-ed post-Bruen are still being litigated at the appellate level.  In Bianchi […]

Assault Weapon Bans, Grandfathered Guns, and Market Prices

Posted by on August 12, 2022

On July 29, the House of Representatives passed the Assault Weapon Ban of 2022 (HR 1808). The bill would prohibit the sale, import, or possession of new “assault weapons” and large capacity magazines, as defined in the bill.  The definition section includes not only features or components that bring a weapon under the ban, but […]

Federal Court Declines to Enjoin San Jose’s Gun Liability Insurance Mandate

Posted by on August 10, 2022

Last week, in National Association for Gun Rights v. San Jose, a federal judge in California declined to preliminarily enjoin a San Jose ordinance that requires gun owners to obtain and maintain liability insurance and pay an annual fee. The case is significant not only for its discussion of the constitutionality of mandated gun insurance, […]

What the Panthers Meant By Self-Defense: Race, Violence, and Gun Control

Posted by on August 9, 2022

NOTE:  Portions of this blog post are reformulations of my Master’s Thesis “Picking Up The Gun” completed for the M.St. in U.S. History at the University of Oxford in 2015. [This is a guest post based on a paper that was presented at the Center’s 2022 Firearms Law Works-In-Progress Workshop.] The Supreme Court in Bruen […]

Territorial Gun Regulation and the “Lost” History of the Federal Second Amendment

Posted by on August 8, 2022

The Court’s opinion in Bruen considered five territorial gun laws—passed in the Arizona, New Mexico, Wyoming, Idaho, and Oklahoma territories between 1869 and 1890—that supported New York’s position and, in some cases, imposed even broader restrictions on the right to public carry.  The Court proceeded to disregard all five as “exceptional” outliers.  The Court relied […]

Scholarship Highlight:  Hillel Levin and Timothy Lytton on PLCAA and Bruen

Posted by on August 5, 2022

In a recent article, Hillel Levin and Timothy Lytton consider the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (“PLCAA”) and its statutory exceptions to gun industry immunity in the wake of Bruen.  Levin and Lytton ask the interesting question of whether the lack of analogous historical use of civil lawsuits against gun manufacturers means that […]

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