|The Supreme Court considered Monday whether to dismiss the first gun rights case it has heard in nearly 10 years, an outcome that would come as a huge relief to gun-control advocates.
The justices heard arguments in a dispute over New York City restrictions on transporting licensed, locked and unloaded guns outside the city limits. New York has dropped its transport ban, but only after the high court decided in January to hear the case.
Gun-rights groups are hoping a conservative majority fortified by two appointees of President Donald Trump, Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, would use the case to expand on landmark decisions from a decade ago.
But the court spent most of the hour trying to determine whether anything is left of the case brought by the National Rifle Association’s New York affiliate and three city residents.
Chief Justice John Roberts sought assurances from the city’s lawyer that New York police would not refuse to issue gun licenses to people who have may have violated the old law.
In urging the justices to get rid of the case, Richard Dearing, the city’s lawyer, said repeatedly that the city would not prosecute people for or deny licenses based on past violations.