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A Memorable Day for U.S. Gun Laws

WASHINGTON — In a momentous day for gun laws in the United States, the conservative-majority Supreme Court issued a landmark decision expanding the scope of gun rights, shortly before the Senate introduced the first major gun violence prevention bill in nearly 30 years.

Thursday’s 6-3 ruling struck down a New York law and found a constitutional right to carry a gun outside the home, dividing the court along ideological lines, with all Republican appointees in the majority and the dissenting Democratic appointees.

Shortly after, the evenly divided Senate voted 65 to 34 to advance a modest set of gun restrictions, including enhanced background checks, removing the “small friend” for domestic abusers and state grants to implement crisis prevention programs or “red flag” laws. designed to keep guns away from dangerous people.

The swift reactions highlighted the stark contrast that persists between the two parties on gun laws, with Democrats loudly criticizing the judges as conservative “militants” pushing through a political agenda, while Republicans – whose Most oppose the Senate bill – hailed the decision as a victory. for Second Amendment rights.

For supporters of new laws to tackle mass shootings, the sting of the court’s decision has dulled the imminent realization of the Senate bill, which is expected to pass into final law by the end of the week.

“With this advice, conservative Supreme Court justices have consciously chosen to increase gun violence in the United States, putting us all at greater risk of injury or death from firearms,” ​​said Igor Volsky, founder of Guns Down America, which advocates for fewer guns in the United States “It is striking that this decision comes as the Senate makes historic progress on gun violence prevention legislation and highlights how much we need to do more to build safer communities for all of us.”

Volsky argued that the court majority’s history-based test for the validity of gun regulations could open the door to “eliminating all of these prohibitions,” including shutting down the boyfriend’s escape.

Republicans praise gun decision

Meanwhile, top Republicans celebrated the court’s decision.

“Today’s decision rightly guarantees the right of all law-abiding Americans to defend themselves without unnecessary government interference,” said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., Who opposes Senate gun legislation and is fighting to become president next year.

Donald Trump Jr. attributed the result to his father’s three right-wing Supreme Court nominees for president.

Democrats have said they will highlight the contrast on the campaign trail.

“Voters want tougher gun laws and safer communities. The only people who aren’t are the Republicans in Congress, the gun lobby and, apparently, the right-wing majority on the Supreme Court,” said Jesse Ferguson, a Democratic consultant. “After Uvalde, Buffalo and other tragedies, Republicans in battleground states need to explain why they want more guns flooding our streets and more shootings in places that should be safe.”

But some Republican strategists have said passage of the Senate bill would likely dull the political energy Democrats hope to harness by running against the Supreme Court’s gun ruling.

“They’re going to have a hard time selling this while Chris Murphy brags about the first bipartisan law in a generation,” said GOP consultant and former campaign aide Matt Gorman, referring to the Connecticut senator and co-author. the invoice’s.

“Militant Supreme Court”

Brian Fallon, executive director of Demand Justice and a former Democratic Senate executive aide, said the ruling is “a stark reminder that no amount of legislative maneuvering will do” to address gun violence as long as Republicans control the court.

He called on Democrats to make the court a campaign issue, quoting a poll by Hart Research Associates which found that voters in Senate battleground states oppose, by a 21-point margin, court rulings that overturn state gun limits and allow more people to bear arms in public.

Fallon also urged Democrats to “embrace calls to expand the Court” by adding seats, or else they would “accept a future where an out of touch Supreme Court has made it functionally impossible to take the necessary steps to prevent gun violence.”

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, DN.Y., tore up gun ruling following ‘militant Supreme Court’ undermining states’ rights over gun laws even as her bill leaked ruling that would overturn Roe v. Wade claims to protect states’ abortion rights.

Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., Said the gun ruling is “the product of a generations-long right-wing effort to change the court,” saying the current court is “led by activists conservative judiciaries who twist constitutional analysis to override their own political preferences for laws passed by Congress or the states.”

And Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D.N.Y., slammed “far-right Roberts Court” for making a “far-from-the-mainstream and dangerous ruling that flies in the face of overwhelming public support for rational firearms. security measures.”

“A decisive victory”

The most enthusiastic praise for the court’s decision came from Republicans who oppose the Senate gun bill, including Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, who led a brief joined by 24 colleagues from the Senate GOP calling on the court to strike down New York’s gun law.

“This case’s assertion of the right to carry a gun for self-defense outside the home is a constant reminder of our duty as citizens to defend our constitutional rights against brazen attacks from the left,” he said. Cruz said in a statement.

Among the signers of Cruz’s memoir were senators who voted to assemble the Supreme Court’s conservative majority but favor the bipartisan bill to toughen gun laws – including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell , R-Ky., as well as the party’s two main negotiators on the gun bill, Sens. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Thom Tillis, RN.C.

The votes of these three Republicans for the gun bill were a blow to the National Rifle Association, which has come out against and rarely loses a vote in the US Senate. But the Supreme Court has given the gun advocacy organization cause to celebrate.

“Today’s decision is a decisive victory for good men and women across America and is the result of a decades-long fight by the NRA,” said Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president of the NRA.


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