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Judge Blocks New Jersey Law Barring Gun Carrying In Many Areas

A federal judge temporarily blocked part of a newly-enacted New Jersey law that prohibits guns from being carried in certain parts of the state, Politico reports. U.S. District Judge Renée Marie Bumb issued a temporary restraining order Monday against a section of the law that specifically bans guns from being carried in public libraries or museums, bars or restaurants that serve alcohol and entertainment facilities. One catch-all provision barring guns from being carried on private property where the owner did not explicitly grant permission was also blocked, as was another section that prohibits guns from being carried in vehicles unless they are unloaded and stored in a closed area. The challenge to the new law, which Gov. Phil Murphy signed in December, was brought by gun-rights groups. The law was pushed by Murphy and Democrats in the state legislature who sought to revamp New Jersey’s gun carry laws in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling last summer that drastically expanded the scope of who could carry guns outside of the home.

Much of the new law — which also overhauled the process for obtaining a concealed carry permit as well as mandated the purchase of liability insurance for gun carriers — remains unaffected. Most of the 25 “sensitive places” where guns are banned, including government buildings, transportation hubs and hospitals, likewise were not affected. Gun rights groups said they targeted certain parts of the law they believed would be easiest to overturn. "We chose wisely in what we were challenging so we could quickly get a temporary restraining order,” said Alan Gottlieb of the Second Amendment Foundation, which is leading the legal challenge. “So instead of challenging the whole law in New Jersey, we challenged the most egregious parts. … because we wanted to win and we wanted to win it fast.” The constitutionality of the new law has been a central point of debate, with Republicans and gun-rights groups saying it would not stand up to a court challenge. Senate Republican Minority Leader Steve Oroho said the court order “validates what [Republicans] have been saying [and] is a victory for the 2nd Amendment.”


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