Up in Smoke: An Update on Louisiana’s Right to Bear Arms

by K. Connor Long

This past fall, Louisiana residents voted to amend the State’s constitutional right to bear arms. As a result of the amendment, article 1, section 11 of the Louisiana Constitution now reads: “The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms is fundamental and shall not be infringed. Any restriction on this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny.”1 This strict scrutiny judicial review mandate makes Louisiana’s right to bears arms the strongest in the entire country2 and is an immediate threat to any existing and future firearm legislation.3 As many legal scholars and practitioners expected, the passage of this amendment has given rise to a litany of constitutional challenges to existing Louisiana firearm regulations.4 Indeed, the Louisiana Supreme Court has already adjudicated some of these cases; however, so far the firearm regulations have stood their ground against strict scrutiny review and survived these challenges.

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