“They went everywhere and collected every gun control law they could find and put it into our gun control laws in D.C., and that’s what Heller II challenged,” he said.
D.C. attorney general Irvin Nathan argued that the city’s requirements “are not onerous or unduly burdensome.”
“[T]hey do not violate the Second Amendment, even assuming they impinge on some ‘core’ aspect of that right,” he wrote in a motion filed late last year.
And despite the Illinois high court’s ruling, Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law in August a bill to require universal background checks on gun buys in the state — an effort that flamed out in Congress last spring.
New York, Connecticut, California, Maryland, Colorado and New York were among the states that passed strict new gun laws in the wake of the shooting deaths of 20 children and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. on Dec. 14, 2012.
“In the past 12 months alone, our work with legislators and grassroots groups has led four states — including New York — to pass laws that will stop gun sales to dangerous or disturbed people,” former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said last month.
Mr. Bloomberg, who heads the gun control advocacy group Mayors Against Illegal Guns, also counted as victories the Senate’s confirming B. Todd Jones as the permanent head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the blocking of “lax gun laws” at the federal level, and the successful campaign to persuade Wal-Mart “to voluntarily put in place measures that keep guns out of the wrong hands.”
On the other hand, about half of state legislatures across the country have tried to loosen gun laws over the same time period — in many cases successfully. Legislators in Illinois, for example, overrode Mr. Quinn’s veto of concealed-carry legislation in July, making the Prairie State the final one to adopt some form of legal concealed carry law. Many of the state-passed initiatives to restrict military-style semiautomatic rifles and ban high-capacity magazines have been or are being challenged in court.
Mrs. Norton, for her part, counted one of her 2013 accomplishments as working with the Senate to remove an amendment from the fiscal 2014 Defense Authorization bill expressing the sense of the Congress that active-duty military personnel be exempt from D.C. gun laws.
“As every year,” the 2013 summary reads, “[Mrs.] Norton faced bills to eliminate all or parts of D.C.’s gun laws.”