Scalia: Hand-held rocket launchers may be permissible under Second Amendment

On this weekend’s broadcast of “Fox News Sunday,” host Chris Wallace asked Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia to react to the possibility that gun laws might change in the wake of the shooting tragedy in Aurora, Colo. earlier this month.

Wallace wanted to know how much power state governments and legislatures had to regulate firearms, including semiautomatic weapons.

“What the opinion in [District of Columbia v. Heller] said is that it will have to be decided in future cases what limitations upon the right to keep and bear arms are permissible,” Scalia said. “Some undoubtedly are because there were some that were acknowledged at the time [of the writing of the Constitution] … so, yes, there are some limitations that can be imposed. What they are will depend on what the society understood were reasonable limitations at the time.”

When Wallace asked whether the Second Amendment permitted even weapons that could fire hundreds of rounds in a minute, Scalia paused.



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