Supreme Court Refuses to Consider Maryland Assault Weapon Ban

(Bloomberg) -- The US Supreme Court turned away a challenge to a Maryland law that bans semiautomatic assault-style rifles and large-capacity magazines.

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The justices, however, took no action on appeals over a similar Illinois law, leaving open the possibility the court will agree at a later point to take up the politically charged Second Amendment issue.

The Maryland case was unusual because gun-rights advocates were seeking Supreme Court review even though the 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals hasn’t yet ruled. The case has been pending at the Richmond, Virginia-based appeals court for more than a year amid procedural maneuvering.

Gun-rights advocates are trying to extend the 2022 Supreme Court decision that declared a constitutional right to carry a firearm and established a tough new test for assessing restrictions. The court’s conservative majority said defenders of gun laws must be able to show a historical tradition of similar regulations.

The justices in their current term are weighing the fate of a federal gun ban for people subject to domestic violence restraining orders.

Illinois and Maryland are among 14 states that outlaw either so-called assault weapons or large-capacity magazines, or both. As is its normal practice, the court gave no explanation in turning away the appeal in the Maryland case.

The Maryland case is Bianchi v. Brown, 23-863.

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