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The Supreme Court, Elena Kagan, and Guns

From Big Government:

This week’s historic Supreme Court case on gun rights has pivotal implications for Elena Kagan’s Supreme Court confirmation hearings. From now on, the biggest battles over the Second Amendment will be won or lost in the Supreme Court.

In the 2008 case D.C. v. Heller, the Supreme Court held 5−4 that the Second Amendment secures an individual right to own a gun. But because the Bill of Rights only applies directly to federal laws (such as those in D.C.), Heller only made the Second Amendment a right against the federal government.

On June 28 of this year in McDonald v. Chicago, a new 5−4 Supreme Court decision held that the individual right to own a gun from Heller is a fundamental right, and as such extends through the Fourteenth Amendment as a right against state and local governments as well.

Justice Stephen Breyer wrote a dissent that Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor joined in full. (Justice John Paul Stevens wrote a separate dissent.) That dissent contains a telling revelation about Barack Obama’s Supreme Court.

When Sotomayor was nominated for the High Court last year, she was asked by Judiciary Committee Chairman Pat Leahy (D−VT) whether after Heller it is now a matter of settled law that the Second Amendment secures an individual right to own a gun. Her answer was clear and direct: “Yes, sir.”

Read the rest at Big Government.

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