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SCOTUS Candidates & the 2nd Amendment

July 9, 2018

With the retirement of Justice Kennedy from the Supreme Court, an opportunity arose for the 2nd Amendment community for a justice to not only tip the scales in a conservative majority but for the opportunity for a 2nd Amendment case to be heard at the highest court in our great country.

No official list of hopefuls has been released by the White House, but the media has identified four possible picks for the open seat, and their history with gun advocacy is important to examine.

Raymond Kethledge

According to the National Review, Kethledge actively defends and exercises his 2A rights as an avid hunter and lecturer. During his time on the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, Kethledge has demonstrated his support for the 2nd Amendment through his application of the SCOTUS decision District of Columbia v. Heller. Kethledge even shows his support for citizen’s 2nd Amendment rights in a case brought before him, Tyler v. Hillsdale County Sheriff’s Department in defense of the individual’s right to the right to keep and bear arms.

Brett Kavanaugh

Kavanaugh is no stranger to the 2nd Amendment either, he gave his dissent for a case while serving on the US Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, where a three-judge panel upheld that assault weapons could be banned in D.C. and all guns had to be registered. Kavanaugh cited the famous District of Columbia v. Heller in his dissent, saying,”There is no meaningful or persuasive constitutional distinction between semi-automatic handguns and semi-automatic rifles. Semi-automatic rifles, like semi-automatic handguns, have not traditionally been banned and are in common use by law-abiding citizens for self-defense in the home, hunting, and other lawful uses.” Read his full statement here. 

Amy Coney Barrett

Although Barrett is not on record supporting or condemning issues for the 2nd Amendment, her conservative record suggests her support for the preservation of citizen’s rights rather than the degradation of them. She was appointed to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in 2017, giving nearly no time to accrue a record. The Los Angeles Times gives more information on her record here. 

Thomas Hardiman 

Lastly, we have Hardiman, who has been described by UCLA Law Professor Adam Winkler as a “Second Amendment Extremist”. Of course, coming from a law Professor from UCLA, this is a badge of honor. Winkler goes on to describe Hardiman, that he believes there is little flexibility in the government’s regulation of guns and the government should have as much say in hindering 2A rights as existed during the founding. Hardiman holds an expansive view of our 2nd Amendment rights.

Whoever is chosen this evening will be the right choice for the 2nd Amendment community. We will all be waiting with bated breath for the announcement that will make history!

With the retirement of Justice Kennedy from the Supreme Court, an opportunity arose for the 2nd Amendment community for a justice to not only tip the scales in a conservative majority but for the opportunity for a 2nd Amendment case to be heard at the highest court in our great country.

No official list of hopefuls has been released by the White House, but the media has identified four possible picks for the open seat, and their history with gun advocacy is important to examine.

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