FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) - The administration of Gov. Matt Bevin has filed a friend of the court brief in support of a federal case involving Second Amendment rights.
The governor joined 23 other states in a U.S. Supreme Court amicus brief, which challenges a New York City handgun law that, if upheld, could lead to infringements upon the Second Amendment freedoms enjoyed by Kentuckians.
The New York City law criminalizes taking a handgun outside the home, thus denying citizens the ability to defend themselves and their property, according to the governor. The brief recognizes this restriction as both “inconsistent with history” and “unreasonable,” noting that “carrying arms outside of the home, historically, was a vital component of self-defense.”
Bevin says the ordinance also prohibits traveling with a firearm inside of a vehicle, threatening the free-flow of commerce and tourism between New York and states like Kentucky. In his brief, the governor states such a severe restriction not only poses a significant barrier to interstate travel, but also could have devastating consequences for states like Kentucky, that enjoy a thriving hunting tourism industry.
“This is the first Second Amendment case heard by the Supreme Court in nearly a decade,” said Steve Pitt, Bevin’s general counsel. “We joined this case without reservation because Kentuckians have a vested interest in ensuring that states like New York cannot infringe upon the right of Kentucky citizens to bear arms. It is critically important that the Supreme Court hear directly from the Commonwealth when deciding this important issue.”
In October, Gov. Bevin joined a 16-state coalition in an amicus brief requesting that the Supreme Court hear the case. The justices agreed to hear the case in January, and Kentucky immediately banded with 23 other states to file this brief in support of the case’s merits.
Other states who have joined in filing the amicus brief include Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia.