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December 04, 2020

NRA sues New Jersey to change state's concealed-carry law

Lawsuits Guns
NJ concealed carry gun Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

The NRA filed a federal lawsuit the wee that seeks to weaken New Jersey's concealed weapons laws. A spokesperson for the organization said, 'It's outrageous that law-abiding people are being denied their right to self-defense by arbitrary means.'

The National Rifle Association is suing to overturn New Jersey's concealed-carry law.

The suit, which was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, seeks to change the law dictating when an individual can be approved for a concealed firearm permit. 

New Jersey's law requires that residents show a "justifiable need" for obtaining such a permit, which the NRA says restricts residents in their right to a concealed carry permit by "arbitrary means," and is therefore a violation of the Second Amendment. 

"It’s outrageous that law-abiding people are being denied their right to self-defense by arbitrary means ... The state of New Jersey has no reason to deny law-abiding citizens their constitutional rights," said Amy Hunter, spokeswoman for the NRA.

In 2017, the NRA tired to circumvent New Jersey's restrictions with its support of the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act in the U.S. House, which was then controlled by Republicans at the time. The law would have required states, like New Jersey, to honor concealed weapons permits issued by other states, much like how states recognize the validity of out-of-state drivers licenses.

The Conceal Carry Reciprocity Act passed in the House, but was never taken up by the U.S. Senate.

The lawsuit filed against New Jersey this week is supported by New Jersey's NRA affiliate, the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs, as well as the Coalition of New Jersey Firearm Owners and a few individual New Jersey residents, who are all plaintiffs in the suit.

New Jersey's Attorney General Gubir Grewal is the listed as the main defendant in the suit. He has has not yet commented on the suit. 

New Jersey's gun laws are considered among of the strictest in the United States, and one gun-violence prevention organization ranks them as the second most-stringent behind California.

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