Newsom Signs California Gun Law Modelled After Texas Abortion Legislation!
California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday signed a bill into law that allows private citizens to bring a civil action against anyone who manufactures, distributes, transports or imports assault weapons or ghost guns, which are banned in the state.
California Senate Bill 1327 is based on a Texas law that allows private persons to sue abortion providers or anybody who supports a pregnant person in obtaining an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy. The US Supreme Court upheld Texas’ six-week abortion restriction in December, prompting Newsom, who has been supportive of abortion rights and pro-gun control, to express his “outrage” at the ruling and instruct his team to prepare a similar law to regulate weapons.
Under California law, anybody under the age of 21 can sue a registered weapons dealer who “sells, furnishes, delivers, or gives ownership or control of a firearm.” It empowers residents to sue for a minimum of $10,000 per firearm, plus attorney fees.
Newsom, a Democrat, admitted on Friday that the measure would almost certainly be challenged in court.
“We expect this will be argued before the Supreme Court, and that the Supreme Court will be called into question. Because if there is any principle left with this Supreme Court – and that is an open question – they cannot deny us the freedom to continue in this direction “He said this after signing the bill at Santa Monica College, the site of a shooting rampage in 2013.
The law, presented in February, states that if the Texas abortion statute is struck down by the US Supreme Court or the Texas Supreme Court, it will become “inoperative.” After that, the California statute would be “repealed on January 1 of the following year.”
The US Supreme Court concluded last month that the right to carry a gun outside the home is protected by the Constitution, and in overturning a New York gun carry limitation, it opened the door for all kinds of gun safety rules to be challenged in federal court. The ruling is expected to have an influence on legal challenges to California’s assault weapons ban, a limit on magazines containing more than 10 rounds, and the ban on preventing anyone under the age of 21 from acquiring certain semi-automatic weapons.
California enacted multiple gun-control laws this month in the aftermath of several mass shootings across the country, including one on July 4 in downtown Sacramento and another three months earlier in the same city.
Last week, Newsom signed a bill into law that makes it easier for victims of gun violence or local governments to sue gun manufacturers if the firearms were used in crimes. In addition, the governor approved a raft of firearms laws on Thursday, including tougher limits on gun sales and dealers within the state, as well as improved information sharing between schools and law enforcement agencies.
While the Democratic governor stated on Friday that he had a “zero” chance of running for President in 2024, he has recently increased his challenge to other big state Republican governors who, like him, are potential presidential possibilities.
Ahead of the legislation signing Friday, he ran a full-page newspaper ad in three Texas newspapers that attacked Texas Gov. Greg Abbott over his position on abortion rights and guns. “If Texas can ban abortion and endanger lives, California can ban deadly weapons of war and save lives,”. “If Governor Abbott truly wants to protect the right to life, I urge him to follow California’s lead.”
During Friday’s signing ceremony, Newsom argued that it’s time to “act differently” in response to rights being “wiped out in real time” by red states. He said he would highlight this legislation for other governors to enact in their states.
But asked directly about a presidential bid, the governor said Friday: “Subzero, I’ll say it in five languages now. I don’t know how more often I can say it.”
“I can’t take what’s happening in this country, I can’t take the assault on liberty and freedom. I can’t take the rhetoric,” he said, adding, “This is a challenging moment. The Supreme Court has put this responsibility squarely on the doorstep of governors now, and legislative leaders, and local leaders across this country. And we have to meet this moment and we can’t do it with passivity that we’ve seen in the past.”
The American Civil Liberties Union California Action, on the other hand, warned that Senate Bill 1327 would set a “dangerous legal precedent — not only undermining fundamental principles of due process but eliminating the judiciary as a check and balance against the political branches, effectively unraveling the separation of powers doctrine.”
“There is no way to ‘take advantage of the flawed logic’ of Texas law,” the ACLU California Action wrote in a letter to the bill’s legislative authors, adding that “replicating the heinous Texas model only serves to legitimize and promote it, as evidenced by the copycat measures already enacted in some states, with many more pending across the country.”