New state law regulating firearms labeled 'brazen'

New state law regulating firearms labeled 'brazen'

New state law regulating firearms labeled 'brazen'

A group that advocates for constitutional rights has challenged a new Connecticut law that it says places undue burdens on gun owners in the state.

Democratic State Representative Steve Stafstrom proudly proclaimed in May that his state is not "recklessly retreating" from efforts to regulate guns as is the case, he says, in other states.

The legislature's leadership has led to a challenge from We The Patriots USA, whose mission statement is to create a "powerful network of Patriots" to preserve and reclaim God-given inalienable rights – including but not limited to rights listed in the U.S. Constitution.

Among numerous other restrictions, the new law bans citizens from carrying firearms in public – that coming just a year after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a New York law that attempted to do the same thing.

Last June, the Court voted 6-3 that New York's demand that applicants for a concealed carry permit demonstrate a special need for self-defense was unconstitutional. The ruling was seen as the first expansion of gun rights since the high court protected gun use for self-defense within the home in 2008.

Connecticut lawmakers said their new effort closed loopholes in the law passed in 2013 months after a shooter killed 20 children and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

Opponents say the law goes too far

Brian Festa, an attorney and We The Patriots USA co-founder, argues the law goes too far.

Festa, Brian (We The Patriots USA Festa

"We literally just filed the lawsuit a couple of days ago in federal court, challenging Governor Ned Lamont and the Connecticut state legislature passing what is really a radical, leftist activist bill," he said. "It actually makes the law-abiding citizens of Connecticut significantly less-safe."

Opponents of the law believe the Supreme Court rulings have created solid footing for gun owners and are hopeful the law will be overturned.

"It's clearly political showmanship. They have to know this is going to be overturned – if not in the district court of Connecticut or the Second Circuit [of Appeals], then certainly by the Supreme Court," Festa said.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Wednesday highlighted Connecticut, Vermont, Colorado and Hawaii who she said in the last week have all enacted "common sense gun safety bills that will save lives."

Gov. Lamont welcomed the praise and quickly shared the clip on social media. But Festa predicts the kudos will be short-lived.

"This isn't going to end with the victory and applause that [Lamont] is getting now. This is going to end by being overturned in the United States Supreme Court. It's just so brazen that they would do this in the wake of the [earlier] decisions," Festa said.