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Gun Control after Heller : Litigating against Regulation

In: Regulation vs. Litigation: Perspectives from Economics and Law

Author

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  • Philip J. Cook
  • Jens Ludwig
  • Adam Samaha

Abstract

The "core right" established in D.C. vs. Heller (2008) is to keep an operable handgun in the home for self-defense purposes. If the Court extends this right to cover state and local jurisdictions, the result is likely to include the elimination of the most stringent existing regulations - such as Chicago's handgun ban - and could also possibly ban regulations that place substantial restrictions or costs on handgun ownership. We find evidence in support of four conclusions: The effect of Heller may be to increase the prevalence of handgun ownership in jurisdictions that currently have restrictive laws; Given the best evidence on the consequences of increased prevalence of gun ownership, these jurisdictions will experience a greater burden of crime due to more lethal violence and an increased burglary rate; Nonetheless, a regime with greater scope for gun rights is not necessarily inferior - whether restrictive regulations would pass a cost benefit test may depend on whether we accept the Heller viewpoint that there is a legal entitlement to possess a handgun; In any event, the core right defined by Heller leaves room for some regulation that would reduce the negative externalities of gun ownership.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Philip J. Cook & Jens Ludwig & Adam Samaha, 2010. "Gun Control after Heller : Litigating against Regulation," NBER Chapters,in: Regulation vs. Litigation: Perspectives from Economics and Law, pages 103-135 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberch:11960
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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/chapters/c11960.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Philip J. Cook & Jens Ludwig & Sudhir A. Venkatesh & Anthony A. Braga, 2005. "Underground Gun Markets," Working Papers id:245, eSocialSciences.
    2. Viscusi, W Kip & Aldy, Joseph E, 2003. "The Value of a Statistical Life: A Critical Review of Market Estimates throughout the World," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 5-76, August.
    3. Philip J. Cook & James A. Leitzel, 2002. ""Smart" Guns: A Technological Fix For Regulating The Secondary Market," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 20(1), pages 38-49, January.
    4. Ludwig, Jens & Cook, Philip J, 2001. "The Benefits of Reducing Gun Violence: Evidence from Contingent-Valuation Survey Data," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 207-226, May.
    5. Deborah Azrael & Philip J. Cook & Matthew Miller, 2001. "State and Local Prevalence of Firearms Ownership: Measurement, Structure, and Trends," NBER Working Papers 8570, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Cook, Philip J. & Ludwig, Jens, 2006. "The social costs of gun ownership," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1-2), pages 379-391, January.
    7. repec:reg:rpubli:282 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Philip J. Cook & Daniel A. Graham, 1977. "The Demand for Insurance and Protection: The Case of Irreplaceable Commodities," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 91(1), pages 143-156.
    9. Mark Duggan, 2001. "More Guns, More Crime," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(5), pages 1086-1114, October.
    10. Lott, John R, Jr & Mustard, David B, 1997. "Crime, Deterrence, and Right-to-Carry Concealed Handguns," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(1), pages 1-68, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:uwp:jhriss:v:52:y:2017:i:3:p:621-653 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Chandler McClellan & Erdal Tekin, 2017. "Stand Your Ground Laws, Homicides, and Injuries," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 52(3), pages 621-653.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • K14 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Criminal Law

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