Montana Campus Carry

House Bill 102 of the 2021 legislative session included a feature to allow campus carry of firearms.  HB 102 passed and was signed into law by Governor Gianforte.

The Montana Board of Regents sued seeking to block the campus carry feature of HB 102.  This lawsuit is against the State of Montana and is defended by Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen and the Solicitor General.  The Helena District Court judge hearing the case (McMahon) issued a ruling prohibiting participants in the lawsuit from making and arguments about the Right to Keep and Bear Arms in this lawsuit about firearms (yeah, right).  Then, predictably, the judge ruled in favor of the Regents and issued a decision blocking the campus carry feature of HB 102.

This District Court ruling has now been appealed to the Montana Supreme Court.  Below are links to the briefs by the AG and several amici (friends of the Court) submitting briefs in support of HB 102, campus carry, and the State.

Because Regents v. Montana has been appealed to the Montana Supreme Court, it will be useful to pay attention to how the MSC justices come down in this case, and when they are up for reelection.  Here is when the several MSC justices are up for reelection:

MSC Justice          Reelection Year
Jim Rice                2022
Ingrid Gustafson   2022
Mike McGrath       2024
Dirk Sandefur       2024
Beth Baker            2026
Laurie McKinnon  2028
Jim Shea               2028

Here are links to several briefs in support of campus carry that you may find interesting:

Opening brief of the Attorney General

MSSA amicus brief - RKBA in the Montana Constitution

Second Amendment Foundation (and others) amicus brief
- Effect of U.S. constitution and federal cases

Daniels County, Montana amicus brief - Prior restraint analysis should be applied to disallow current university policy

Montana legislators amicus brief - Regents follow scores of other laws without complaint about usurpation of authority

Western Montana Fish and Game Association amicus brief - Regents' predictions of mayhem and campus exodus simply don't happen in other states with campus carry