Supreme Court Rejects Another Bid to Halt New York Gun Law

January 18, 2023

For the second time in roughly a week, the Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected an emergency bid to halt enforcement of the gun control law New York’s legislature adopted after the Court last year struck down its firearms licensing restrictions.

The Justices turned away a challenge by a group of firearms dealers to block the law while their appeal of a lower court’s decision proceeds. The dealers said the state’s regulations hurt their businesses. 

On June 24, the Supreme Court had struck down New York state’s 1913 law banning carrying concealed handguns outside the home. The Justices had ruled it violated the right to “keep and bear arms” under the 2nd Amendment.

Within weeks Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) reacted by creating “gun-free zones,” banning firearms from government buildings, schools, houses of worship, protests, polling places and venues where alcohol is served, among other places. 

U.S. District Judge Glenn Suddaby in October blocked enforcement of much of the law but the Manhattan-based 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in December put that decision on hold while the state pursued an appeal.

On Wednesday, January 11, the Court rejected a request by six members of the firearms rights group Gun Owners of America to throw out the lower court’s decision, allowing Hochul’s law to be enforced.

During last Wednesday’s ruling conservative Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito noted that other challenges to the state’s law are currently on a fast-track in the 2nd Circuit. They invited plaintiffs to return to the Supreme Court if the 2nd Circuit does not expedite the proceedings in their case as well.

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