Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced Tuesday he has directed the State Police to suspend its “good and substantial reason” standards for the issuance of licenses to wear and carry firearms.
Hogan said his decision was the result of a Supreme Court decision last month to strike down a century-old law in New York that gave the state broad authority to deny access to permits allowing residents to carry a gun outside the home. Hogan, a Republican, said the New York law was “virtually indistinguishable” from Maryland law.
“In light of the ruling and to ensure compliance with the Constitution, I am directing the Maryland State Police to immediately suspend utilization of the ‘good and substantial reason’ standard when reviewing applications for Wear and Carry Permits,” the governor said in a statement.
The ruling, which was the first major gun decision by the court in a decade, paved the way for changes to legislation across the country — especially in Maryland, California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Rhode Island, which all share legislation similar to what was struck down in New York. A challenge to Maryland’s gun law was already making its way through the court system.
“I have consistently supported the right of law-abiding citizens to own and carry firearms, while enacting responsible and common-sense measures to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill,” the governor also said in his statement.
Other states have responded to the ruling, including Massachusetts, which announced revisions in line with the court’s decision — gutting a provision that allowed license restrictions if an applicant failed to provide a good enough reason for the purchase. A letter from the state’s attorney general said officials should “no longer enforce the ‘good reason’ provision of Massachusetts state law.”
In contrast, California, New York and Rhode Island have all announced stricter gun initiatives in the wake of the ruling.