The Supreme Court Won’t Strike Down Gun Control Laws—for Now

It’s another big victory for gun control groups.

People with weapons march in front of the Capitol in Raleigh, North Carolina, on May 1.Gerry Broome/AP

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up any new cases related to state gun laws in its next term, effectively killing nearly a dozen challenges to state gun control measures. It’s a somewhat surprising decision for the Supreme Court—and another big victory for gun control advocates—after the court previously declined to issue a ruling on a New York City gun regulation in April.

Among the cases the court passed up were challenges to open carry restrictions in Maryland and New Jersey. They were similar to the New York case, which the court declared moot in April after the city government, fearing that a Supreme Court ruling could threaten gun control laws across the country, reversed its law barring residents from taking guns outside of the city. Three of the court’s conservative judges dissented from that ruling, though gun rights groups found encouragement in the ruling by Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who wrote that the Supreme Court should address the Second Amendment “soon.” That suggested that the court might take up one of the pending Second Amendment lawsuits.

The court has been reluctant to take up any new Second Amendment disputes since its landmark 2008 decision in Heller v. District of Columbia, which affirmed the right to keep a gun at home for personal protection. But with a stronger conservative majority on the Supreme Court in the Trump era, gun rights advocates were hoping that the court would make a ruling on one of the many challenges to new state gun control laws. For now, at least, that won’t happen.

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate