Federal Judge Strikes Down Minnesota Law Barring 18-20 Year-Olds From Carrying Guns
What You Need To Know:
- A Minnesota judge has declared unconstitutional a law that banned those under 21 from obtaining gun permits and carrying firearms.
- The decision followed a lawsuit filed by three individuals who argued that the law violated their Second Amendment rights.
- The judge relied on the Supreme Court’s 2022 decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Ass’n v. Bruen to strike down the age limit.
A federal judge in Minnesota has struck down a state law that prohibited individuals under 21 from obtaining a permit to carry a pistol and lawfully carrying a firearm.
United States District Court Judge Katherine Menendez issued the ruling in response to a lawsuit filed by three plaintiffs between the ages of 18 and 20 who argued that the law violated their Second Amendment rights.
In a 50-page decision, Judge Menendez declared that the age limit violated the rights of 18 to 20-year-olds and blocked the law, citing the Supreme Court’s 2022 decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Ass’n v. Bruen.
The plaintiffs in the case had argued that they wished to carry pistols for self-defense but were deterred by the fear of arrest or prosecution for violating the age requirement. In her ruling, Judge Menendez concluded that Minnesota’s law was unconstitutional and violated the Second Amendment.
She stated that the government must prove that a firearm law “is consistent with the Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation” for it to be constitutional, and that the defendants had failed to identify analogous regulations that show a historical tradition in America of depriving 18- to 20-year-olds the right to publicly carry a handgun for self-defense.
Following the ruling, those between the ages of 18 and 20 will now be able to obtain a license to publicly carry a firearm in Minnesota. The decision comes amidst Governor Tim Walz’s (D-Minn.) push for new gun control measures in the state this year.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison filed an emergency motion for a stay immediately following the ruling, seeking to give the state an opportunity to file an appeal of the court’s decision or to have a “stay for 60 days to allow for its orderly implementation.” Ellison claimed that if the ruling was overturned, then “there would be innumerable young people with guns, whose permits were no longer valid.”