Maine’s revised concealed carry law [text, PDF] went into effect Thursday and allows legal gun owners to carry concealed weapons without a permit. The law was passed by the Maine State Legislature [official website] and approved [legislative materials] by Governor Paul LePage [official website] in July. The law applies to people who are 21 or older or military members age 18 or older, and will likely effect current gun owners who no longer need to apply for a permit from the Maine State Police [official website] or attend safety classes in order to carry a concealed weapon. Possession of a state issued permit is still necessary in order to carry a concealed weapon in other states and prohibitions on where firearms can be carried [summary, PDF] remain in place.
Gun control [JURIST backgrounder] and the Second Amendment [text] continue to be controversial topics in the US. In September, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued a mixed ruling [JURIST report] on DC gun laws, ultimately upholding six and striking down four controversial elements of the Firearms Registration Amendment Act (FRA) and the Firearms Amendment Act of 2012. The laws were created in response to the Supreme Court striking down [opinion] a DC law prohibiting firearm ownership six years ago. In July US Secretary of Defense Ash Carter ordered a review [JURIST report] of military recruitment office security policies in the wake of a shooting at a Chattanooga, Tennessee Navy-Marine reserve center. Last December the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled [JURIST report] that a law prohibiting individuals who have been committed to a mental institution for any amount of time from possessing a firearm is unconstitutional under the Second Amendment.