Brett Kavanaugh’s Defense of Second Amendment Is Hardly ‘Extremist’

Gun Rights

From the moment President Donald Trump nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh to fill Justice Anthony Kennedy’s Supreme Court seat, gun control advocates have presented a seemingly endless string of accusations about Kavanaugh’s “ dangerous views ” on the Second Amendment. Taken together, the denunciations of his jurisprudence spell out a parade of horribles that make the judge appear primed to personally hand out grenade launchers to preschoolers. Shannon Watts, founder of the gun control group Moms Demand Action, criticized Kavanaugh’s interpretation of the Second Amendment as “ extreme and dangerous ” because it “does not take into account the law’s impact on public safety.” Similarly, Dennis Henigan, the former vice president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, complained that Kavanaugh did not allow his interpretation of constitutional protections to be swayed by “newly emerging threats of violence” or the support of new data. These dramatic and uninformed condemnations reveal much less about Kavanaugh’s jurisprudence than they do about the struggle between the left’s vision of an activist judiciary and the Framers’ vision of governance , which emphasizes a judiciary that plays an important but limited role and leaves policymaking to Congress. Where the left wants a “living Constitution” that allows unelected judges to dictate policy and flexibly expand or retract the scope and meaning of constitutional rights at will — often as a means of sidestepping the broad consensus intentionally required for constitutional amendments — a good judge instead defers to the original meaning of the Constitution and […]

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Brett Kavanaugh’s Defense of Second Amendment Is Hardly ‘Extremist’

Brett Kavanaugh’s Defense of Second Amendment Is Hardly ‘Extremist’

Gun Rights

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh has been an ardent defender of the Second Amendment as a circuit judge. (Photo: Kevin Dietsch/UPI/Newscom) Amy Swearer is a legal policy analyst at the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at The Heritage Foundation. From the moment President Donald Trump nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh to fill Justice Anthony Kennedy’s Supreme Court seat, gun control advocates have presented a seemingly endless string of accusations about Kavanaugh’s “ dangerous views ” on the Second Amendment. Taken together, the denunciations of his jurisprudence spell out a parade of horribles that make the judge appear primed to personally hand out grenade launchers to preschoolers. Shannon Watts, founder of the gun control group Moms Demand Action, criticized Kavanaugh’s interpretation of the Second Amendment as “ extreme and dangerous ” because it “does not take into account the law’s impact on public safety.” Similarly, Dennis Henigan, the former vice president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, complained that Kavanaugh did not allow his interpretation of constitutional protections to be swayed by “newly emerging threats of violence” or the support of new data. These dramatic and uninformed condemnations reveal much less about Kavanaugh’s jurisprudence than they do about the struggle between the left’s vision of an activist judiciary and the Framers’ vision of governance , which emphasizes a judiciary that plays an important but limited role and leaves policymaking to Congress. Where the left wants a “living Constitution” that allows unelected judges to dictate policy and flexibly […]

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