The legislation, signed into law Tuesday by Gov. Phil Murphy, comes amid pressure from states with strict gun laws to circumvent a Supreme Court decision to dismantle them. But his next book could be much shorter, as a looming U.S. Supreme Court ruling on New York`s secret harbor laws threatens to undermine New Jersey`s equally strict rules on who can carry a handgun in public. And it could open the door to further challenges to state gun laws, which are among the strictest in the country. “We have one of the strictest gun laws in America, and we have one of the lowest rates of gun violence in America,” acting Attorney General Matthew Platkin told The Record and NorthJersey.com. “Any decision that removes or significantly restricts our requirements for a secret transport permit application will have a significant impact on public safety. There is no doubt about that. Murphy, a Democrat, has made gun control a priority since replacing the Republican governor. Chris Christie in January 2018.
It has signed many new laws and taken other steps to combat gun violence. New Jersey lawmakers on Thursday introduced a measure that goes even further than New York`s gun license package and puts it on track to tighten the country`s already strictest gun laws. The denial violated their Second Amendment rights, the men say. If the court rules in their favor, other states, including New Jersey, will likely have to rewrite their own laws, said Esther Sanchez-Gomez, senior attorney at Giffords Law Center. But even before Murphy took office, New Jersey was known for its strict gun restrictions. Here`s a look at some of the Garden State`s most notable gun laws: New York and New Jersey officials had generally researched how to respond to the Supreme Court before the ruling was made last month. Following the ruling, lawyers for New York Governor Kathy Hochul and New York Governor Murphy exchanged drafts of the legislation they were working on, though the state`s underlying secret port laws aren`t necessarily analogous. The debate over whether the U.S. should tighten its gun control laws has revived after two mass shootings — in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio — that claimed the lives of 29 people in less than 24 hours last weekend. Even in New York City, where lawmakers passed some of the country`s strictest gun laws, it proved difficult to draft a comprehensive gun bill, and many of the proposed restrictions were removed from the final bill. Authorities considered whether people carrying a concealed weapon should disclose the existence and location of their weapon during traffic stops, but abandoned the idea.
Measures approved by the Government. Phil Murphy on Tuesday signaled patchwork legislation looming as states grapple with last month`s ruling that repealed a New York state law that limited how and where residents could carry handguns. Even as states toughen laws to circumvent the court, a litany of measures remain in limbo. The case stems from a legal challenge by two men, Robert Nash and Brandon Koch, who were granted permits to carry hidden handguns for hunting, target shooting and self-defence in certain areas. But the licensing officer refused to grant them full licenses because neither man could prove he still needed a gun to defend himself, according to federal court documents. An Eatontown gun rights lawyer, Nappen, literally wrote the book — a volume of more than 500 pages — on New Jersey`s Byzantine gun laws. Murphy`s deputy, Lieutenant Governor Sheila Oliver, will sign three new gun laws on Monday. (Murphy is on a family vacation in Italy.) The newly signed legislation will make it harder to get a handgun license and buy high-powered rifles in New Jersey, the latest in a patchwork of states with strict gun laws to circumvent a sweeping Supreme Court decision to dismantle them. Last month`s ruling has pushed some states to scramble to rewrite laws before they can be challenged under the new Supreme Court precedent.
Along with New York and New Jersey, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed two bills over the holiday weekend that would restrict the sale and distribution of so-called ghost guns made from untraceable components and ban guns without a unique serial number. “There seems to be a growing blatant disregard for precedent when it comes to those who were elected to positions to draft our laws,” Oliva said. These include passing Murphy`s gun control laws, lawsuits by gun manufacturers and retailers, and pursuing new laws consistent with the Supreme Court ruling, he said. Only California has stricter gun laws than New Jersey, according to a 2021 report from the Giffords Law Center for the Prevention of Gun Violence, an organization dedicated to enforcing gun control laws. Officials said the legislation was a direct response to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling earlier this year that struck down New York`s previous secret port law, which was among the most restrictive in the country. Beyond New York, the decision cast doubt on the laws of New Jersey and a handful of other states with extensive requirements to obtain a gun license.
Garden State lawmakers said the new measure would protect New Jersey residents from violence without violating the Supreme Court`s ruling. This does not mean that states will not be able to restrict firearms. Ironically, liberal states that embrace gun control may end up adopting the tactics of the anti-abortion lobby to kill the decision granting women the right to choose a thousand cuts. But Gov. Phil Murphy, a Democrat who imposed a litany of new gun restrictions during his first term, is “deeply concerned about the potential impact of the secret tragedy in New York City,” spokeswoman Alyana Alfaro said in a statement. Justice Clarence Thomas, author of the decision, said the Second Amendment “enshrines the right of a person to carry a handgun to defend himself outside the home.” While the ruling concerned New York`s strict handgun laws, gun owners in other states should be able to challenge similar rules.