By Paul Helmke, President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun
The nomination of Judge Sonia
Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court appears to be a positive one for those
committed to reducing gun violence in this country. Judge Sotomayor’s legal
opinions have shown a strong respect for precedent in upholding federal and
state gun laws, while her background and experience promise to bring a real
world, personal understanding of the effects of gun violence that will
be welcome on our nation’s highest Court.
Respect for precedent and
understanding the importance of strong gun laws in the real world will be
especially important as the Supreme Court is likely to face gun lobby efforts
to expand the Court’s recent Second Amendment ruling in District of Columbia
v. Heller into an unbridled right to any gun, any place, any time. Her
experience prosecuting perpetrators of gun crimes in New York City added to
her appreciation for the real-world life and death consequences of
any efforts to roll back gun laws that protect all Americans.
judge on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, Judge Sotomayor has shown a
respect for precedent that has narrowly interpreted the Second Amendment, a
far contrast to the activist majority in the Heller case, which sidestepped
seventy year old precedent in finding a new individual right to have handguns
in the home. Judge Sotomayor has consistently rejected challenges to gun
laws that protect our communities from gun violence.
her background, her experience, and her strong record of upholding lifesaving
gun laws, we are pleased with Judge Sotomayor’s nomination to the Supreme
Court and look forward to hearing and evaluating her testimony during her
Senate confirmation hearings.