Based on a hearing earlier this week, it seems as though the Supreme Court will decline to hear a challenge to a New York City gun control restriction because the city had already repealed it. According to NBC News, the defunct NYC ordinance “said residents with the proper permit could take a handgun outside the home to a city shooting range, provided it was unloaded and in a locked container.” However, “the gun could not be taken beyond the city limits.”
I’m a simple man, so to me that reads an awful lot like an infringement on the right to keep and bear arms, and something SCOTUS should certainly look at. But the restriction, passed in 2008, was repealed in June after the Supremes had agreed to hear the case. Furthermore, the state assembly followed with a law forbidding local governments from enacting any similar restriction. As a result, the court now seems less interested in a ruling than it once was.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, apparently awake through Monday’s entire proceeding, asked, “What’s left of this case?” And Justice Sonia Sotomayor said, “You’re asking us to take a case in which the other side has thrown in the towel and opine on a law that’s not on the books anymore.” Justice Neil Gorsuch asked if the surviving restrictions aren’t enough to keep the case alive, and Chief Justice John Roberts was told No when he asked if violations of the old law could be used against current gun owners. Neither justice Brett Kavanaugh nor Clarence Thomas said anything.