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Friday, February 14, 2014

Courts - 9th Circuit rules "it is unconstitutional to confine the 'right to bear' arms solely to the home."

Lyle Denniston reported last evening in SCOTUSblog in a post that begins:

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit — the first to rule, ahead of the Supreme Court, that the Second Amendment right to have a gun extends nationwide — today issued the most sweeping decision yet on the right to carry a gun in public places. The amendment means, the panel ruled in a two-to-one decision, that it is unconstitutional to confine the “right to bear” arms solely to the home.

Such a limitation, the panel ruled, would amount to a complete destruction of Second Amendment rights and cannot be justified on any constitutional reasoning. Thus, it said, while government might forbid carrying a concealed gun in public, or carrying a gun openly in public, it cannot do both. The right to have a gun for self-defense clearly exists beyond one’s home and hearth, the majority said. And, it added, it has always existed, since the Second Amendment was put into the Constitution in 1791.

Only one other federal appeals court — the Seventh Circuit — has ruled that the right to have a gun for personal use continues when one leaves home, but its ruling on the point was notably more narrow than the new Ninth Circuit decision. Other appeals courts have refused to assure protection for carrying a gun beyond the home — a split that might enhance the prospects that the Supreme Court would ultimately settle the question.

See also this ILB post from Feb. 10th.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on February 14, 2014 06:49 AM
Posted to Courts in general