High court ruling on NY gun law may impact other states

Dan Abrams Live

WASHINGTON (NewsNation Now) — The Supreme Court is taking up one of its biggest gun cases in more than a decade, and the decision could have a major impact on the Second Amendment and who can carry in public places in several states.

Supreme Court decisions in 2008 and 2010 established a nationwide right to keep a gun at home for self-defense. The question the court is now confronting is about the right to carry a gun outside the home.

“I think it’d be fair to say that if the court rules that you have a Second Amendment right to carry a firearm, simply on a desire to do so for self-defense, that you’ll see more guns in more places in America,” Darrell Miller, a professor at the Duke University Center for Firearms Law, said on “Dan Abrams Live.

On Wednesday, the court seemed ready to strike down a restrictive New York gun-permitting law. The law has been in place since 1913 and says that to carry a concealed handgun in public for self-defense, a person applying for a license has to demonstrate “proper cause,” an actual need to carry the weapon.

“If the court strikes down New York’s law, it imperils similar laws that are in states like Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryland and California, for example, states that cover about 80 million people or about a quarter of the population,” Miller said.

About half a dozen states restrict the carrying of guns to those who can demonstrate a particular need for doing so. The justices could decide whether those laws, known as “may issue” laws, can stand.

“My prediction at this point is the law looks like it’s going to go down,” Miller said. “And then the question really is, how broadly will the majority write the opinion? And what kind of tools will they use to say that it is unconstitutional? Will they say it’s too much discretion? Will they say there’s not a law like this in 1791, and therefore it’s unconstitutional? Those are the big questions that I’m going to be looking for.”

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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