The 6-3 ruling split the nation’s highest court along ideological lines, with conservative justices siding with gun owners and liberals saying the ruling set back state efforts to combat gun violence.
- The decision could shift the legal landscape on Second Amendment rights while Americans are deeply divided over gun access
- By a vote of 6-3, the court struck down a New York law requiring residents to have “proper cause” to carry a handgun
- Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, writing for the majority, said the New York law violated the Constitution’s “right to keep and bear arms.”
WASHINGTON – Millions of Americans could soon find it easier to carry handguns in public after a Supreme Court decision Thursday struck down a New York law requiring state residents to have a special need to carry weapons outside the home.
“We know of no other constitutional right that an individual may exercise only after demonstrating to government officers some special need,” Associate Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in the 6-3 majority opinion. “That is not how the First Amendment works when it comes to unpopular speech or the free exercise of religion…. And it is not how the Second Amendment works when it comes to public carry for self defense.”