Will This Be The Next 2A Case Heard By SCOTUS?
On Friday, the nine justices on the U.S. Supreme Court will meet in conference to go through several dozen cases that are currently being considered for review by the Court. Among them are ten cases having to do with the right to keep and bear arms, and given the fact that justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas, and Brett Kavanaugh all indicated this week that they want the Court to hear a Second Amendment challenge sooner rather than later, expectations are high that the justices could announce that they’ll hear at least one of these cases as early as next Monday.
On today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co, I’m joined by Scott Bach, the executive director of the Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs to talk about one case that may be the most likely candidate to be chosen by justices. It’s called Rogers v. Grewal, and the case involves a challenge to New Jersey’s incredibly restrictive concealed carry laws, which are denying the average resident their right to bear arms.
In the writ of certiorari filed with the Supreme Court, attorneys for Thomas Rogers and other plaintiffs lay out their reasoning for why the court needs to hear the case, noting that there is currently a split among the various courts of appeals regarding the right to bear arms outside of the home.
In District of Columbia v. Heller, this Court held that the Second Amendment protects “the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation” for “the core lawful purpose of self-defense.” But the lower courts have split over the constitutionality of laws that categorically bar typical, law-abiding citizens from carrying handguns outside the home for self-defense. The D.C. Circuit has seen these laws for what they are— “necessarily a total ban on most [citizens’] right to carry a gun”—and it has struck down the District of Columbia’s requirement that citizens show a “good reason,” other than self-defense, before carrying a handgun outside the home as categorically unconstitutional.
But the court below upheld New Jersey’s substantively indistinguishable “justifiable need” requirement, App.1a, based on its reasoning in an earlier case that such a law “does not burden conduct within the scope of the Second Amendment’s guarantee” and, even if it did, it would pass constitutional muster under a toothless version of “intermediate scrutiny” that consists of little more than blind deference to the State’s unbridled “sound judgment and discretion” in passing the law.
This direct conflict between the lower courts goes to the core of the Second Amendment. The question presented in this case is nothing less than this: Does the Second Amendment protect, as it says, the right to keep and bear Arms for all Americans? Or can some circuits effectively erase two of those words from the Constitution? This Court should intervene to ensure a uniform understanding of the Second Amendment and prevent the lower courts from nullifying rights guaranteed by the text of the Constitution.
Thomas Rogers tried to obtain a New Jersey Handgun Carry Permit in 2017, but was denied after the local police chief declared that Rogers had failed to demonstrate a justifiable need to carry. Rogers has been the victim of a violent crime, and regularly works in high crime areas in his job running an ATM business, but those weren’t seen as valid reasons to receive a license. “It’s my right” is also not a valid reason to receive a carry permit in the state, and in fact there are only a few hundred permits that have been issued in New Jersey, most to retired law enforcement, judges, and a few well-connected politicians.
The Third Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed the case…
Read more at Bearing Arms.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Guns & Gadgets provided a summary of the ten cases before the Supreme Court for consideration. Please watch below: