Landmark Supreme Court cases strengthened Montanans’ gun rights

Heller & McDonald court decision anniversaries this week

BILLINGS, Mont. – Montanans enjoy stronger gun rights on the anniversary of landmark Supreme Court decisions thanks to a fight waged by Jon Tester against local gun restrictions.

Today marks the fourth anniversary of the Court’s decision District of Columbia v. Heller, which struck down a controversial handgun ban in the city of Washington, D.C.

In 2008, Tester worked together with Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison to author a congressional “Friend of the Court” brief, encouraging justices to rule in favor of stronger gun rights in the case. [AP, 6/26/08]

Tester and Hutchison then teamed up again to write the congressional Friend of the Court brief in the landmark gun rights case McDonald v. Chicago [The Hill, 10/7/09]. A record 309 members of Congress signed Tester’s brief.

The second anniversary of the Supreme Court’s McDonald v. Chicago ruling, again in favor of stronger gun rights, falls on Thursday.

Tester’s advocacy in both cases was recognized by the National Rifle Association on behalf of Montana gun owners.

“I would especially like to acknowledge the outstanding efforts of… U.S. Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and Jon Tester (D-MT)…for their work on this important effort,” said the NRA’s Chris Cox of Tester’s work in the McDonald v. Chicago decision. “This brief boasts the most signers of a congressional amicus brief in the history of the Supreme Court — breaking the record set just last year in the Heller case.”

  • In addition to these rulings from the Supreme Court, Montanans experience stronger gun rights thanks to Jon Tester’s leadership in the U.S. Senate.
  • Tester restored the Second Amendment rights of visitors in National Parks and wildlife refuges by passing legislation in 2009. [CQ; Vote 188, 5/12/09]
  • Amtrak passengers may now check firearms on trains thanks to legislation co-sponsored by Tester in 2009. [S. 1638, co-sponsored on 12/2/09]
  • Tester introduced the Collectible Firearms Protection Act, which was lauded by the NRA. [Press Release, 10/1/2010]
  • The National Shooting Sports Foundation named Jon Tester as Legislator of the Year in 2011. [National Shooting Sports Foundation, 4/18/12]