Joseph Blocher

Volume 89.2
Cities, Preemption, and the Statutory Second Amendment
Joseph Blocher
Lanty L. Smith ’67 Professor of Law, Duke Law School.

Many thanks to Richard Briffault, Jacob Charles, Aziz Huq, Darrell A.H. Miller, Richard Schragger, and Rachel Simon for comments and to participants in this symposium and the State & Local Government Works-in-Progress Conference at Willamette University College of Law.

Although the Second Amendment tends to dominate the discussion about legal limits on gun regulation, nothing has done more to shape the state of urban gun law than state preemption laws, which fully or partially limit cities’ ability to regulate guns at the local level. The goals of this short Essay are to shed light on this “Statutory Second Amendment” and to provide a basic framework for evaluating it.