45 U.S. Supreme Court cases from 1856 to 2017 related to restrictions on arms

45 U.S. Supreme Court Decisions That Confirmed Restrictions on the individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms. There are other U.S. Supreme Court gun cases not included in this Appendix.

The following U.S. Supreme Court Cases, in date order by oldest first, include 39 cases blocked [YES] and [NO] from the Descriptive Index in the book Supreme Court Gun Cases,[1] and six additional cases beginning in 2008, including one case that made limited law by the U.S. Supreme Court refusing to hear a gun case from a lower court.

For example, U.S. v. Cruikshank (1856) is not included because it did not confirm specific restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms.

In other gun cases, the Court made restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms by not taking such cases from a lower court, leaving the decision from the lower courts (assuming they restricted the right to keep and bear arms) as limited law – law in the area covered by the lower court.

As the U.S. Supreme Court cases below show, the following restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms have been ruled constitutional directly or indirectly by our Supreme Court.[2]

  1. Dred Scott v. Sandford (1856) 60 U.S. 393 [Vote 7 to 2]
Majority Dissenting
1. Taney, R. (Chief Justice) – Wrote majority opinion

2. Wayne, J. – Joined majority opinion

3. Catron, J. – Joined majority opinion

4. Daniel, P. – Joined majority opinion

5. Nelson, S. – Joined majority opinion

6. Grier, R. – Joined majority opinion

7. Campbell, J. – Joined majority opinion

1. McLean, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Curtis, B. – Wrote dissenting opinion

 

“Do freed slaves have the rights of other American citizens, including the right to keep and bear arms [NO] . . .”[3]

 

  1. Ex Parte Milligan (1866) 71 U.S. 2 [Vote 9 to 0]
Majority Dissenting
1. Davis, D. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Chase, S. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Wayne, J. – Joined majority opinion

4. Nelson, S. – Joined majority opinion

5. Grier, R. – Joined majority opinion

6. Clifford, N. – Joined majority opinion

7. Swayne, N. – Joined majority opinion

8. Miller, S. – Joined majority opinion

9. Field, S. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

 

“[The published legal arguments on both sides of this case, involving trial of a civilian by court martial, both make reference to the 2nd Amendment as an individual right belonging to the people, but a right not belonging to slaves or rebels; . . . ]”[4]

 

  1. Cummings v. Missouri (1866) 71 U.S. 277 [Vote 5 to 4]
Majority Dissenting
1. Field, S. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Nelson, S. – Joined majority opinion

3. Clifford, N. – Joined majority opinion

4. Grier, R. – Joined majority opinion

5. Wayne, J. – Joined majority opinion

1. Miller, S. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Chase, S. (Chief Justice) – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Swayne, N. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Davis, D. – Joined dissenting opinion

“Is deprivation or suspension of a person’s civil rights, including the right to bear arms, a form of punishment [YES].”[5]

 

  1. Presser v. Illinois (1886) 116 U.S. 252 [Vote 9 to 0]
Majority Dissenting
1. Waite, M. (Chief Justice) –  Wrote majority opinion

2. Miller, S. – Joined majority opinion

3. Field, S. – Joined majority opinion

4. Bradley, J. – Joined majority opinion

5. Harlan, J. – Joined majority opinion

6. Woods, W. – Joined majority opinion

7. Matthews, T. – Joined majority opinion

8. Gray, H. – Joined majority opinion

9. Blatchford, S. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

 

“. . .  Can states regulate firearms as required for public order [YES].”[6]

 

  1. Robertson v. Baldwin (1897) 165 U.S. 275 [Vote 7 to 1*]
Majority Dissenting
1. Brown, H. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Fuller, M. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Brewer, D. – Joined majority opinion

4. White, E. – Joined majority opinion

5. Shiras, G. – Joined majority opinion

6. Peckham, R. – Joined majority opinion

7. Field, S. – Joined majority opinion

1. Harlan, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion

 

 

*Justice Gray took no part in the decision.

“. . .  Can a state prohibit concealed carry without violating the 2ndAmendment [YES].”[7]

 

  1. Twining v. New Jersey (1908) 211 U.S. 78 [Vote 8 to 1]
Majority Dissenting
1. Moody, W. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Fuller, M. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Brewer, D. – Joined majority opinion

4. White, E. – Joined majority opinion

5. Peckham, R. – Joined majority opinion

6. Day, W. – Joined majority opinion

7. McKenna, J. – Joined majority opinion

8. Holmes, O. – Joined majority opinion

1. Harlan, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion

 

 

“Are the right of trial by jury, guaranteed by the 7thAmendment, and the right to bear arms, guaranteed by the 2ndAmendment, among the privileges and immunities of citizens of the United States guaranteed by the 14thAmendment against abridgment by the States [NO].”[8]

 

  1. Patsone v. Pennsylvania (1914) 232 U.S. 138 [Vote 8 to 1 [9]]
Majority Dissenting
1. Holmes, O. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Day, W. – Joined majority opinion

3. McKenna, J. – Joined majority opinion

4. Lurton, H. – Joined majority opinion

5. Van Devanter, W. – Joined majority opinion

6. Pitney, M. – Joined majority opinion

7. Lamar, J. – Joined majority opinion

8. Hughes, C. – Joined majority opinion

1. White, E. (Chief Justice) – Wrote dissenting opinion

 

 

“Can a state prohibit possession of rifles or shotguns for hunting by nonresident aliens without violating due process guarantees [YES] . . .”[10]

 

  1. Sonzinsky v. United States (1937) 300 U.S. 506 [Vote 9 to 0 [11]]
Majority Dissenting
1. Stone, H. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Hughes, C. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. McReynolds, J. – Joined majority opinion

4. Van Devanter, W. – Joined majority opinion

5. Brandeis, L. – Joined majority opinion

6. Sutherland, G. – Joined majority opinion

7. Butler, P. – Joined majority opinion

8. Roberts, O. – Joined majority opinion

9. Cardozo, B. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

 

“Is a firearm, as defined in the 1934 NFA law, and a firearm dealer, federally taxable [YES].”[12]

 

  1. United States v. Miller (1939) 307 U.S. 174 [Vote 8 to 0*]
Majority Dissenting
1. McReynolds, J. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Hughes, C. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Butler, P. – Joined majority opinion

4. Roberts, O. – Joined majority opinion

5. Reed, S. – Joined majority opinion

6. Black, H. – Joined majority opinion

7. Frankfurter, F. – Joined majority opinion

8. Stone, H. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

*Justice Douglas took no part in the decision.

“Without the presentation of evidence or testimony, can the Court determine whether a short-barreled shotgun, as defined in the 1934 NFA law, is a militia weapon and therefore an arm protected by the 2ndAmendment [NO] . . .”[13]

 

10. Konigsberg v. State Bar of California (1961) 366 U.S. 36 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Harlan II, J. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Frankfurter, F. – Joined majority opinion

3. Whittaker, C. – Joined majority opinion

4. Clark, T. – Joined majority opinion

5. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

1. Black, H. Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Warren, E. (Chief Justice) – Joined dissenting opinions

3. Douglas, W. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Brennan, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion

 

“Does absolute verbiage (‘shall make no law,’ ‘shall not be infringed’) in the 1stand 2ndAmendments allow for some level of regulation, some of which is well established and widely recognized [YES].”[14]

 

11. Malloy v. Hogan (1964) 378 U.S. 1 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Brennan, W. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Warren, E. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Black, H. – Joined majority opinion

4. Goldberg, A. – Joined majority opinion

5. Douglas, W. – Wrote concurring opinion

1. Harlan II, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Clark, T. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. White, B. – Wrote dissenting opinion

4. Stewart, P. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

“. . . Did Presser v. Illinoisfind that particular guarantees of the 2ndAmendment were not safeguarded from state action [YES].”[15]

 

12. Terry v. Ohio (1968) 392 U.S. 1 [Vote 8 to 1]

Majority Dissenting
1. Warren, E. (Chief Justice) – Wrote majority opinion

2. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

3. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

4. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

5. Fortas, A. – Joined majority opinion

6. Harlan II, J. – Wrote concurring opinion

7. White, B. – Wrote concurring opinion

8. Black, H. – Wrote specially concurring opinion

1. Douglas, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion

“Is a limited, protective, non-invasive ‘pat-down’ search for weapons, known as a ‘stop and frisk,’ a reasonable search and seizure under the 4th Amendment if an officer observes suspicious behavior and believes it’s necessary for the safety of the officer or others nearby [YES]; Is the higher standard of probable cause needed to conduct such a search for weapons [NO];. . .  Is such a stop and frisk a severe but allowable intrusion upon cherished personal security [YES].”[16]

 

13. Haynes v. United States (1968) 390 U.S. 85 [Vote 8 to 1]

Majority Dissenting
1. Harlan II, J. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Black, H. – Joined majority opinion

3. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

4. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

5. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

6. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

7. Fortas, A. – Joined majority opinion

8. Douglas, W. – Joined majority opinion

1. Warren, E. (Chief Justice) – Wrote dissenting opinion

“Does Congress have the authority to regulate the manufacture, transfer, and possession of firearms, subject to constitutional limitations, and to tax unlawful activities [YES] . . .”[17]

 

14. Bass v. United States (1971) 404 U.S. 336 [Vote 5 to 2]

Majority Dissenting
1. Marshall, T.  – Wrote majority opinion

2. Douglas, W. – Joined majority opinion

3. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

4. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

5. Brennan, W. – Wrote specially concurring opinion

1. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Blackmun, H. – Wrote dissenting opinion

*There were two vacancies in the High Court at this time.

“To convict a felon of illegal possession of a firearm, . . . Would showing that the firearm had at some time previously traveled in interstate commerce be a sufficient nexus [YES].”[18]

 

15. United States v. Biswell (1972) 406 U.S. 311 [Vote 8 to 1]

Majority Dissenting
1. White, B. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

4. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

5. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

6. Rehnquist, W. – Joined majority opinion

7. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

8. Blackmun, H. – Wrote specially concurring opinion

1. Douglas, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion

“. . . When a dealer ‘Chooses to engage in this pervasively regulated [arms] business’ and to accept a federal license, does he do so with the knowledge that his business’ will be the subject to effective inspection [YES].”[19]

 

16. Adams v. Williams (1972) 407 U.S. 143 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. Rehnquist, W. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

4. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

5. Blackmun, H. – Joined majority opinion

6. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

1. Douglas, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion, joined dissenting opinion

2. Marshall, T. – Wrote dissenting opinion, joined dissenting opinion

3. Brennan, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion

“Can a peace officer conduct a limited protective search for concealed weapons, if there is reason to believe a suspect is armed and dangerous [YES] . . .”[20]

 

17. Huddleston v. United States (1974) 415 U.S. 814 [Vote 8 to 1]

Majority Dissenting
1. Blackmun, H. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

4. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

5. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

6. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

7. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

8. Rehnquist, W. – Joined majority opinion

1. Douglas, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion

“. . .  Did Congress require commerce in firearms to be channeled through a federalized network of dealers in an effort to halt illegal mail-order and interstate consumer traffic in firearms [YES].”[21]

 

18. Powell v. United States (1975) 423 U.S. 87 [Vote 8 to 0*]

Majority Dissenting
1. Rehnquist, W. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

4. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

5. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

6. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

7. Blackmun, H. – Joined majority opinion

8. Stewart, P. – Wrote specially concurring opinion

*Justice Douglas’ seat was vacant due to his retirement a month before.

“Is a 22-inch-long sawed-off shotgun capable of being concealed on the person hence illegal to ship through the U.S. Post Office [YES].”[22]

 

19. Barrett v. United States (1976) 423 U.S. 212 [Vote 6 to 2*]

Majority Dissenting
1. Blackmun, H. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

4. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

5. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

6. White, B. – Wrote concurring opinion

1. Stewart, P. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. – Joined dissenting opinion

*Justice Stevens took no part in the decision.

“Is the Gun Control Act violated by a convicted felon acquiring a gun that has at some point moved in interstate commerce, even if the felon’s acquisition and possession occurred entirely within one State [YES].”[23]

 

20. Scarborough v. United States (1977) 431 U.S. 563 [Vote 7 to 1*]

Majority Dissenting
1. Marshall, T. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

4. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

5. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

6. Blackmun, H. – Joined majority opinion

7. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

1. Stewart, P. – Wrote dissenting opinion

*Justice Rehnquist took no part in the decision.

“With regard to illegal possession of a firearm by a felon, which is federally banned for gun in or affecting commerce, does it matter when the gun moved in commerce, or when the felon was convicted, as long as both conditions occurred [NO].”[24]

 

21. Lewis v. United States (1980) 445 U.S. 55 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. Blackmun, H. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Stewart, P. – Joined majority opinion

4. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

5. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

6. Rehnquist, W. – Joined majority opinion

1. Brennan, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Marshall, T. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Powell, L. – Joined dissenting opinion

“If a person is prohibited from possessing firearms due to a prior felony conviction, does it matter if the prior conviction was unconstitutional [NO].”[25]

 

22. Dickerson v. New Banner Inst., Inc. (1983) 460 U.S. 103 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Blackmun, H. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

4. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

5. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

1. Rehnquist, W. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Brennan, W. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Stevens, J. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. O’Connor, S. – Joined dissenting opinion

“. . . Is it constitutional to deny your right to bear arms after your conviction has been expunged [YES].”[26]

 

23. One Assortment of 89 Firearms v. United States (1984) 465 U.S. 354 [Vote 9 to 0]

Majority Dissenting
1. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. – Joined majority opinion

3. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

4. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

5. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

6. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

7. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

8. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

9. Blackmun, H. – Joined majority opinion

“Does acquittal from criminal charges for dealing in firearms without a license prevent the government from conducting a separate civil forfeiture action and confiscating the firearms involved [NO]; Is such confiscation a violation of the protection against double jeopardy [NO]; Can the lower threshold of guilt (preponderance of the evidence) allow the government to prevail in the forfeiture, where it could not against the higher threshold (beyond a reasonable doubt) in criminal proceedings [YES]; Is the gun confiscation scheme in the law primarily a civil, non-criminal, remedial action [YES].”[27]

 

24. Tennessee v. Garner (1985) 471 U.S. 1; 428 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. White, B. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Brennan, W. – Joined majority opinion

3. Marshall, T. – Joined majority opinion

4. Blackmun, H. – Joined majority opinion

5. Powell, L. – Joined majority opinion

6. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

1. O’Connor, S. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Burger, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Rehnquist, W. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

“. . . Is the use of deadly force by a police officer permissible under the 4thAmendment, if necessary to prevent the escape of a felony suspect who threatens the officer with a weapon, or if there is probable cause to believe that the suspect has committed a crime involving the infliction or threatened infliction of serious physical harm, if, where feasible, some warning has been given [YES].”[28]

 

25. Thompson/Center Arms Co. v. U.S. (1992) 504 U.S. 505 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Souter, D. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

4. Scalia, A. – Wrote specially concurring opinion

5. Thomas, C. – Joined specially concurring opinion

1. White, B. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Blackmun, H. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Stevens, J. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Kennedy, A. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

“. . . Is a carbine together with all the parts needed to convert it to a machinegun a machinegun [YES]; Is an unassembled silencer a silencer [YES]; Is an unassembled machinegun a machinegun [YES]; Is a pistol and attachable shoulder stock found in different drawers of the same dresser a short-barreled rifle [YES].”[29]

 

26. Deal v. United States (1993) 505 U.S. 129 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. Scalia, A.  – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Souter, D. – Joined majority opinion

4. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

5. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

6. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

1. Blackmun, H. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Stevens, J. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. O’Connor, S. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

 

“When a statute calls for quadrupling the prison sentence for subsequent crimes of violence involving use of a gun, can a defendant suffer the enhanced penalty if the subsequent and original charges are all proven during a single trial [YES].”[30]

 

27. Stinson v. United States (1993) 508 U.S. 36 [Vote 9 to 0]

Majority Dissenting
1. Kennedy, A. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Scalia, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

5. Blackmun, H. – Joined majority opinion

6. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

7. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

8. Souter, D. – Joined majority opinion

9. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

 

“Is the commentary to the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, stating that possession of a firearm by a convicted felon is not a crime of violence, binding on the federal courts [YES].”[31]

 

28. Smith v. United States (1993) 508 U.S. 223 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. O’Connor, S. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. White, B. – Joined majority opinion

4. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

5. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

6. Blackmun, H. – Wrote concurring opinion

1. Scalia, A. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Souter, D. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Stevens, J. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

 

 

“For the purpose of enhancing the sentence in a drug-trafficking crime to a mandatory 30 years, does the phrase ‘using a gun,’ in connection with drug trafficking, include offering to barter a MAC-10 [32]with a silencer for two ounces of cocaine [YES].”[33]

  

29. Beecham v. United States (1994) 551 U.S. 368 [Vote 9 to 0]

Majority Dissenting
1. O’Connor, S. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Scalia, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

5. Blackmun, H. – Joined majority opinion

6. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

7. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

8. Souter, D. – Joined majority opinion

9. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

 

“Does reinstatement of a federal felon’s civil right to keep and bear arms by a state court remove the federal disability against felons bearing arms [NO] . . .”[34]

 

30. Custis v. United States (1994) 511 U.S. 485 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Wrote majority opinion

2. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

3. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

4. Scalia, A.  – Joined majority opinion

5. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

6. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

1. Souter, D. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Blackmun, H. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Stevens, J. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

 

 

 

“Can a defendant at a federal sentencing hearing (in this case under the Armed Career Criminal Act of 1984) attack the validity of prior state convictions that are used to enhance his sentence [NO].”[35]

 

31. Ursery v. United States (1996) 518 U.S. 267 [Vote 8 to 1]

Majority Dissenting
1. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Wrote majority opinion

2. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

3. Souter, D. – Joined majority opinion

4. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

5. Breyer, S. – Joined majority opinion

6. Kennedy, A. – Wrote concurring opinion

7. Thomas, C. – Joined concurring opinion

8. Scalia, A. – Wrote specially concurring opinion

1. Stevens, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion

 

 

 

“Was the confiscation of guns in the U.S. v. One Assortment of 89 Firearms case remedial, and not criminal in nature, and thus not prohibited under double jeopardy protections [YES].”[36]

 

32. Gonzales v. United States (1997) 520 U.S. 1 [Vote 7 to 2]

Majority Dissenting
1. O’Connor, S. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Scalia, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

5. Souter, D. – Joined majority opinion

6. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

7. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

1. Stevens, J. – Wrote and joined dissenting opinion

2. Breyer, S. – Wrote and joined dissenting opinion

 

 

 

“May the federal five-year-sentence enhancement for using or carrying a gun during a drug trafficking crime run concurrently with a state sentence [NO].”[37]

 

33. Caron v. United States (1998) 524 U.S. 308 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. Kennedy, A. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

4. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

5. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

6. Breyer, S. – Joined majority opinion

1. Thomas, C. – Wrote dissent opinion

2. Scalia, A. – Joined dissent opinion

3. Souter, D. – Joined dissent opinion

 

 

 

 

“Can a three-time violent-felony loser avoid a five-year mandatory penalty enhancement for carrying a gun in a subsequent crime he commits, if a state court had partially restored his right to keep and bear arms [NO]; If a state restores a convicted felon’s right to keep and bear long guns but not handguns, is the federal ban for felons on possession on all guns removed [NO].”[38]

 

34. Bryan v. United States (1998) 524 U.S. 184 [Vote 6 to 3]

Majority Dissenting
1. Stevens, J. – Wrote majority opinion

2. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

3. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

5. Breyer, S. – Joined majority opinion

6. Souter, D. – Wrote concurring opinion

1. Scalia, A. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Ginsburg, R. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

 

 

 

“Are you committing the crime of ‘willfully’ dealing firearms without a license, if you know your actions are illegal but do not know the licensing law you are violating [YES] . . .”[39]

 

35. Muscarello v. United States (1998) 524 U.S. 125 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Breyer, S. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

3. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

4. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

5. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

1. Ginsburg, R. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Scalia, A. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Souter, D. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

“With regard to a mandatory penalty increase for carrying a firearm in relation to drug trafficking crime, does ‘carry’ include the trunk of a car [YES] . . .”[40]

 

36. Pennsylvania Bd. of Probation and Parole v. Scott (1998) 524 U.S. 357 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Thomas, C. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

4. Scalia, A. – Joined majority opinion

5. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

1. Stevens, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Souter, D. – Wrote dissenting opinion

3. Ginsburg, R. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Breyer, S. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

“Are firearms seized in a warrantless search of a paroled felon’s residence admissible as evidence at a parole revocation hearing, even if the seizure violated the 4th Amendment [YES].”[41]

 

37. Castillo v. United States (2000) 530 U.S. 120 [Vote 9 to 0]

Majority Dissenting
1. Breyer, S. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

4. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

5. Scalia, A. – Joined majority opinion

6. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

7. Souter, D. – Joined majority opinion

8. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

9. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

 

“Is the type of firearm used in a Gun Control Act violation an element of the offense that must be determined by a jury [YES]; . . .”[42]

 

38. Harris v. United States (2002) 00-10666 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Kennedy, A. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Scalia, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. O’Connor, S. – Wrote concurring opinion

5. Breyer, S. Wrote concurring opinion

1. Thomas, C. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Stevens, J. – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Souter, D. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Ginsburg, R. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

“Is brandishing a gun during a specified drug-trafficking crime a sentencing factor to be determined by a judge, and not an element of the crime to be determined by a jury [YES].”[43] 

 

39. Bean v. United States (2002) 01-704 [Vote 9 to 0]

Majority Dissenting
1. Thomas, C. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Rehnquist, W. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Scalia, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. O’Connor, S. – Joined majority opinion

5. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

6. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

7. Souter, D. – Joined majority opinion

8. Stevens, J. – Joined majority opinion

9. Breyer, S. – Joined majority opinion

 

 

“If BATF fails to act on a request for restoration of the right to bear arms, but does not actually deny the request, are there actionable grounds for judicial review to get those rights restored [NO].”[44]

 

40. District of Columbia v. Heller (2008) 554 U.S. 570 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Scalia, A. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Roberts, J. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Thomas, C. – Joined majority opinion

4. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

5. Alito, S. – Joined majority opinion

1. Stevens, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion, joined dissenting opinion

2. Breyer, S. – Wrote dissenting opinion, joined dissenting opinion

3. Ginsburg, R. – Joined dissenting opinions

4. Souter, D. – Joined dissenting opinions

“. . . a law banning the possession of handguns in the home (or making their use in the home infeasible) violates the individual right to keep and bear arms secured by the Second Amendment.” [45]

 

41. McDonald v. Chicago (2010) 561 U.S. 742 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Alito, S. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Roberts, J. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. Thomas, C. – Wrote concurring opinion

5. Scalia, A. – Wrote concurring opinion

1. Stevens, J. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Breyer, S. – Wrote dissenting opinion

3. Ginsburg, R. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Sotomayor, S. – Joined dissenting opinion

The Court held that “the Fourteenth Amendment makes the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms for the purpose of self-defense applicable to the states.”[46]

 

42. Abramski v. United States (2014) 134 S. Ct. 2259 [Vote 5 to 4]

Majority Dissenting
1. Kagan, E. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Sotomayor, S. – Joined majority opinion

3. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

4. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

5. Breyer, S. – Joined majority opinion

1. Scalia, A. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Roberts, J. (Chief Justice) – Joined dissenting opinion

3. Thomas, C. – Joined dissenting opinion

4. Alito, S. – Joined dissenting opinion

“…straw purchasers who present themselves as actual buyers have made a statutorily proscribed false statement because this representation conceals the actual buyer, and ‘[n]o piece of information is more important under federal firearms law than the identity of a gun’s purchaser.’ ”[47]

 

43. Friedman v. City of Highland Park (2015) Petition for a writ of certiorari is denied[48] on Dec. 7, 2015, 136 S. Ct. 447 – Ruling: Court refused to hear appeal [Vote 7 to 2]

Majority Dissenting
1.   Alito, S

2.   Roberts, J. (Chief Justice)

3.   Kennedy, A

4.  Kagan, E

5.  Breyer, S

6.  Ginsburg, R.

7.  Sotomayor, S

1. Thomas C. – Wrote dissent

2. Scalia, A. – Joined dissent

The Court voted 7 to 2 not to take the case on Dec. 7, 2015. That vote, in effect, left a ban in place on automatic weapons and high-capacity magazines by not overturning the lower court decision.[49]

 

44. Voisine et. al. v. United States (2016) 136 S. Ct. 2272 [Vote 6 to 2*]

Majority Dissenting
1. Kagan, E. – Wrote majority opinion

2. Roberts, J. (Chief Justice) – Joined majority opinion

3. Kennedy, A. – Joined majority opinion

4. Ginsburg, R. – Joined majority opinion

5. Breyer, S. – Joined majority opinion

6. Alito, S. – Joined majority opinion

1. Thomas C. – Wrote dissenting opinion

2. Sotomayor, S. – Joined dissenting opinion

 

*Justice Scalia’s vacancy had not yet been filled.

Federal law prohibits any person convicted of a “misdemeanor crime of domestic violence” from possessing a firearm.”[50]

 

45. Peruta v. California (2017) Petition for a writ of certiorari is denied on June 26, 2017, 137 S. Ct. 1995 – Ruling: Court refused to hear appeal [Vote 7 to 2]

Majority Dissenting
1. Kagan, E.

2. Roberts, J. (Chief Justice)

3. Kennedy, A.

4. Ginsburg, R.

5. Breyer, S.

6. Alito, S.

7. Sotomayor, S.

1. Thomas C. – Wrote dissent

2. Gorsuch, N. – Joined dissent

 

The Court voted 7 to 2 not to take the case on June 26, 2017. “The justices let stand a ruling from the 9thCircuit Court of Appeals which held last year that the ‘2nd Amendment does not preserve or protect a right of a member of the general public to carry concealed firearms in public.’”[51]

 


Footnotes

[1] By David B. Kopel, Stephen P. Halbrook, Ph.D., and Alan Korwin

[2] Indirectly by refusing to take cases from a lower court with the effect of confirming the lower court decisions but in a limited geographical area. For example, in the case of 2015 Friedman v. City of Highland Parkthe Supreme Court voted 7 to 2 not to take the case. That vote, in effect, left a ban on automatic weapons and high-capacity magazines in place.

[3] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 652

[4] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 652

[5] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 652

[6] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 656

[7] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 656

[8] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 658

[9] A law librarian at the Library of Congress said on 8-19-16 that our federal government did not record Supreme Court votes like they do today unless the cases were high profile. The librarian found that there was one vote opposed to the Patsone decision but could not find how many votes supported the decision.

[10] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 655

[11] A law librarian at the Library of Congress said on 8-19-16 that there was no opposition in the Sonzinsky case, but their records didn’t show how many judges voted on the case.

[12] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 657

[13] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 655

[14] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 654

[15] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 654

[16] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 658

[17] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 653

[18] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 650

[19] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 651

[20] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 649

[21] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 654

[22] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 656

[23] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 650

[24] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 657

[25] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 654

[26] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 652

[27] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 655

[28] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 658

[29] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 658

[30] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 652

[31] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 658

[32] “Maryland code: Subtitle 3. Assault Pistols and Detachable Magazines,” “(8) Ingram MAC 10/11 semiautomatic pistol and variations including the Partisan Avenger and the SWD Cobray,” ATF.gov, Accessed online 3/30/2016

[33] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 657

[34] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 650-651

[35] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 652

[36] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 659

[37] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 653

[38] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 651

[39] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 651

[40] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 655

[41] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 656

[42] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 652

[43] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 653

[44] Supreme Court Gun Cases, Page 650

[45] Caselaw.findlaw.com

[46] IIT Chicago – Kent College of Law, online 7-30-2016

[47] Supremecourt.gov/opinions

[48] “Parties who are not satisfied with the decision of a lower court must petition the U.S. Supreme Court to hear their case. … The Court usually is not under any obligation to hear these cases, and it usually only does so if the case could have national significance, might harmonize conflicting decisions in the federal Circuit courts, and/or could have precedential value. In fact, the Court accepts 100-150 of the more than 7,000 cases that it is asked to review each year.  … According to these rules, four of the nine Justices must vote to accept a case.” USCourts.gov, accessed 8/17/2017

[49] Westlaw.com, Accessed 9/24/2016

[50] Westlaw.com, Accessed 9/24/2016

[51] LATimes.com, Accessed 8/17/2016