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Supreme Court Hears First Big Gun-Rights Case in Nearly a Decade

It could lead to major expansion of gun rights
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 2, 2019 9:25 AM CST
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The Supreme Court is turning to gun rights for the first time in nearly a decade, even though New York City gun owners already have won changes to a regulation they challenged in court.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)
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(Newser) – The last time the Supreme Court heard a gun case this big, Donald Trump was the host of The Apprentice—and not that many people had heard of Sandy Hook, Conn. The court, which now has a 5-4 conservative majority, is set to hear New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York, its first Second Amendment case in almost a decade, the New York Times reports. "I believe it will change the way the Second Amendment is applied to everyone who owns a gun in the country," plaintiff Romolo Colantone tells Reuters. He's one of three handgun owners, who, along with the state affiliate of the NRA, challenged a city law that banned handgun owners from transporting their weapons to places not listed on their licenses, including shooting ranges outside city limits.

The last major gun cases the top court heard were the landmark DC v. Heller opinion in 2008, which stated that an individual has a right to keep guns in the home for self-defense, and a follow-up case in 2010, CNN reports. Gun control advocates fear that the court, which will issue its ruling in June, will decide lower courts have read the Heller ruling too narrowly use to case to expand gun rights. Advocates hope the court will declare the case moot, since New York City amended its law after the court agreed to hear the case. "The fear is that the court will accept the premise that what we need here is the most robust form of protection we can offer to this fundamental right because it's been orphaned and disrespected," William and Mary Law School professor Timothy Zick tells the Times. (Read more Second Amendment stories.)

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