Supreme Court Throws Out New York Gun Case, Avoiding Major Second Amendment Ruling | National News | US News
THE SUPREME COURT ON Monday threw out a gun rights case from New York, avoiding what would have been the first major Second Amendment ruling in a decade.
The court dismissed the case as moot in an unsigned decision, but three conservative justices filed a dissent.
The case centers on now-rescinded New York City rules barring citizens who have a permit to keep a gun in their homes from transporting firearms to firing ranges outside the city or to a second home in the state. Three people and the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, an affiliate of the National Rifle Association, filed a lawsuit arguing that the restrictions were unconstitutional.
The city threw out the restrictions after the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case, and the state of New York then passed a law that would prevent the rules from being reenacted in the future. Those efforts were widely considered acquiescence on the part of the city, and were seen by some as an attempt to render the case moot and prevent the Supreme Court from issuing a major Second Amendment decision.
The court’s brief, two-page decision Monday only stated that the case was now moot. Justice Samuel Alito Jr. dissented, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch.
“By incorrectly dismissing this case as moot, the court permits our docket to be manipulated in a way that should not be countenanced,” Alito wrote.
Justice Brett Kavanaugh wrote to say he agreed with the majority’s opinion but said similar gun rights issues deserve attention from the court.
“The court should address that issue soon, perhaps in one of the several Second Amendment cases with petitions for certiorari now pending before the court,” Kavanaugh wrote.
The case was the first gun rights case the court agreed to hear since the retirement of former Justice Anthony Kennedy, and the addition of Gorsuch and Kavanaugh to the court.
Though the case was extremely narrow in scope, Second Amendment advocates were hopeful that the court would use the case to say something broader about gun rights.