The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear what could be the most important Second Amendment challenge in more than a decade. 

In the high court's latest order list, they granted a petition to review the decision of a lower court in the matter of the New York Rifle & Pistol Association along with several individual plaintiffs vs Keith Corlett, the head of the New York State Police in his official capacity. The orders specifically say the review will be focused on the question of: "Whether the State's denial of petitioners' applications for concealed-carry licenses for self-defense violated the Second Amendment."

Importantly, the case originally posed the question to the court of: "Whether the Second Amendment allows the government to prohibit ordinary law-abiding citizens from carrying handguns outside the home for self-defense," one that the Supreme Court modified to frame specifically towards concealed carry permits. 

The last major case concerning the right to keep and bear arms that the nation's highest court weighed in on was that of McDonald v. Chicago,  in which a 5-4 court in 2010 found in favor of Otis McDonald, who challenged the city's handgun ban. Three of the five justices that sided with Mr. McDonald on that case – Samuel Alito, John Roberts, and Clarence Thomas – are current members of the court. Their ranks have been swelling in recent years by Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh. 

Pro-gun groups, who feel this case could affect the laws in at least six other states that have strict "no-issue" or "may-issue" laws like New York's – under which upwards of 80 million Americans are forced to comply – could be a huge victory in the making. 

"The Court rarely takes Second Amendment cases," said Jason Ouimet, executive director of NRA-ILA. "Now it’s decided to hear one of the most critical Second Amendment issues. We’re confident that the Court will tell New York and the other states that our Second Amendment right to defend ourselves is fundamental and doesn’t vanish when we leave our homes."

At least one New York lawmaker, upstate conservative U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik, is hopeful of the outcome of the case. 

"I cannot overstate the importance of the Supreme Court’s consideration of this case for law-abiding gun owners in New York State, especially as Governor Cuomo, President Biden, and Democrats across the country continue to impose strict, unconstitutional gun control measure," said Stefanik in a statement. "The Constitution is clear – the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. I am hopeful the Supreme Court will rule in favor of that constitutional truth and protect the right of law-abiding New Yorkers and Americans to defend themselves, regardless of where they are." 

While New York Attorney General Letitia James said she is prepared to "vigorously defend any challenge to New York state’s gun laws," anti-gun groups such as Everytown and Giffords are warning the court to reject the arguments put forward by the case's plaintiffs and "protect recent progress" in the area of gun control. 

Banner photo: Engraved S&W J-frame Model 36 in the Vault.

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