Jun 23, 2022 - Politics & Policy

New York politicians outraged over Supreme Court gun control ruling

Picture of Kathy Hochul

Photo: Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images

New York politicians expressed outrage Thursday over the Supreme Court's decision to strike down a state law that limited who can carry guns in public and set a constitutional right to carry weapons outside of the home for self-defense purposes.

Driving the news: Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) said that it is "outrageous" for the Supreme Court to "recklessly" declare the law unconstitutional during "a moment of national reckoning on gun violence."

  • Hochul said that in response to the ruling, "we are closely reviewing our options — including calling a special session of the legislature."

Other politicians who oppose the ruling include New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D), who said the law "will put New Yorkers at further risk of gun violence."

  • Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) called the decision "shameful," adding that the six justices who supported Justice Clarence Thomas' opinion "have endangered New Yorkers and make us all less safe."
  • Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) said the ruling is "irresponsible and downright dangerous."
  • Attorney General Letitia James (D) called the opinion "incredibly disappointing" and said the "decision will not deter us from standing up to the gun lobby and their repeated efforts to endanger New Yorkers."

Catch up fast: Thomas wrote in the 6-3 opinion that the New York law prevents "law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their right to keep and bear arms in public."

  • In his dissent, Justice Stephen Breyer said that the majority opinion will have "potentially deadly consequences."

Between the lines: Research has found that "laws allowing more citizens to carry guns in public were tied to a rise in gun violence, and the higher a state’s gun-ownership rate, the more likely a mass shooting is to occur," according to the New York State Bar Association, which opposed the court's ruling.

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