For the first time in 10 years, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas posed questions during oral arguments before the Court Monday, challenging Justice Department lawyer Ilana Eisenstein, in the case Voisine v. United States, on the issue of a federal lifetime ban on firearm ownership for those convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence.
“Ms. Eisenstein, one question,” Justice Thomas began, then went on to ask nearly nine more. “Can you give me another area where a misdemeanor violation suspends a constitutional right?” Thomas asked, then cornered the government’s lawyer over and again.
Although the case won’t address whether that ban is constitutional, Justice Thomas’ line of pointed, tough questioning gives many hope that he might pick up where the late Justice Antonin Scalia left off, as the Court’s most vocal, ardent and effective defender of your Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. We suspect Justice Scalia would have approved.