2020 News Releases

AG Derek Schmidt: Second Amendment protects 'fundamental constitutional right'

Release Date: Sep 28, 2020

TOPEKA – (September 28, 2020) – A federal appellate court panel erred by upholding New Jersey’s ban on magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt told a federal appeals court.

On September 1, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit upheld a New Jersey law that criminalizes possession of a magazine carrying more than 10 rounds. Schmidt last week joined 17 other state attorneys general in seeking a rehearing by the entire appellate court. In August, a different federal appellate court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, struck down a similar California law, concluding that it was in conflict with the Second Amendment.

“[W]e are talking about an enumerated, fundamental constitutional right," Schmidt and the other attorneys general wrote in a brief filed last week. "While some may write the Second Amendment off as a relic of a bygone era, in reality, the ability to defend one’s self is extremely important to millions of Americans.”

Schmidt said Kansas has an interest in helping courts uniformly apply the proper constitutional standard to protect the right to keep and bear arms.

A copy of the amicus brief in support of the petition for rehearing in Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs v. New Jersey can be found at https://bit.ly/34bvb2H.

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News releases issued prior to 2011 are available through an archive hosted by the Kansas State Library.