Supreme Court hears arguments on New York's restrictive gun permit law

High court last issued major gun rights decisions in 2008, 2010
Handguns for sale
Handguns for sale
(Anadolu Agency/Getty)

The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments Wednesday that center on New York's restrictive gun-permit law and whether limits the state has placed on carrying a gun in public violate the Second Amendment.

Gun rights advocates including the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association and two private citizens are challenging the law with hopes that the court with a 6-3 conservative majority will side with them, according to the Associated Press

If the high court finds the New York law is too restrictive, the opinion could call into question similar laws in other states and increase the number of people eligible to carry firearms in bars, churches, schools and other places in which people gather.

The court last issued major gun rights decisions in 2008 and 2010. The decisions established a nationwide right to keep a gun at home for self-defense. The question for the court now focuses on carrying a gun in public for self-defense.

In most of the country, gun owners have little difficulty legally carrying their weapons when they go out. But about half a dozen states, including populous California and several Eastern states, restrict the carrying of guns to those who can demonstrate a particular need for doing so. The justices could decide whether the so-called "may issue" laws can stand.