_The U.S. Supreme Court considers on Tuesday a landmark legal battle over gun rights, taking up for the first time in nearly 70 years whether Americans have the right to keep and bear arms. . . .
The case has split the Bush administration.
Solicitor General Paul Clement, the administration’s chief advocate before the Supreme Court, has adopted the position that individuals have a right to own a gun, but it is subject to reasonable government regulation.
Clement, who is arguing before the justices, seeks to preserve all of the current federal restrictions, including a ban on new machine gun sales, a ban on felons owning guns and required background checks for new buyers of handguns.
But Vice President Dick Cheney joined a group of U.S. House of Representatives and Senate members in urging the court to adopt a stronger stand in favour of gun rights._