Thursday, October 5, 2023

Federal Court to Review California's Concealed Carry Limitations

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

On Wednesday, Governor Newsom approved nearly two dozen gun control laws in California, all aimed at making firearm ownership and self-defense more difficult and costly. Senate Bill 2 and Assembly Bill 28 have been particularly highlighted, with immediate legal actions being initiated against them.

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AB 28 introduces an 11% tax on firearms and ammunition. Despite Governor Newsom's terming it a “sin tax”, the California Rifle & Pistol Association (CRPA) contests this, asserting that gun ownership isn't sinful. They're preparing to legally challenge this tax on Second Amendment rights.

SB 2 introduces stringent criteria for obtaining a permit to carry firearms in public and identifies numerous zones where the permit is not applicable. If implemented on the proposed January 1st date, permit holders might unknowingly traverse gun-free zones, thereby violating the law. Proactive measures have been taken by CRPA, including filing a lawsuit even before the bill was officially signed.

Upon the bill’s approval, California Rifle & Pistol Association's attorneys promptly presented the lawsuit to the state.

Moreover, CRPA has recently appealed for a preliminary injunction to prevent the law from coming into effect. The state's response is anticipated by November 3rd, with CRPA's subsequent reply due by November 20th. A hearing with US District Court Judge Cormac Carney is set for December 4th.

Previously, Judge Carney sided with CRPA regarding the "safe" handgun roster, granting their preliminary injunction request against the Unsafe Handgun Act.

The recent gun laws sanctioned by Newsom are believed by many to be a reaction to last year’s Supreme Court's Bruen decision. The court clarified that an excessive designation of “sensitive” zones restricting lawful firearm possession is inappropriate. However, Newsom and his associates seem to be doing just that, despite knowing that only law-abiding citizens, not criminals, seek concealed carry licenses.

Historical data from various states underscores the incredibly low crime rates among concealed carry permit holders. Similar data recently led a Hawaii court to preliminarily enjoin a comparable law. Another ruling against Maryland's "sensitive places" law has just been announced.

The strategy of designating numerous gun-free zones is believed to be a response orchestrated by the nationally influential gun control group Everytown Law, prevalent in states with an aversion to firearm ownership. Federal courts in states like Hawaii, New York, New Jersey, and Maryland have already prohibited such laws.

Key court rulings in this context include:

- Antonyuk v. Hochul, 2022 (N.D.N.Y. Nov. 7, 2022)

- Koons v. Platkin, 2023 (D.N.J. May 16, 2023)

- Wolford v. Lopez, 2023 (D. Haw. Aug. 8, 2023)

Inside sources from Sacramento indicate that the local administration hopes to pass a multitude of gun control laws to overwhelm Second Amendment advocacy groups.

Despite Governor Newsom utilizing substantial state resources to defend these laws, countless gun owners are rallying to support legal challenges defending their rights. The CRPA and its partners remain steadfast in contesting these overreaches. By enacting these laws, Newsom inadvertently united an unparalleled consortium of gun rights organizations in opposition.

Esteemed pro-Second Amendment entities partaking in the lawsuit against the new laws are familiar to Californians. Organizations like CRPA, Gun Owners of California, and Second Amendment Foundation, as well as prominent figures like Reno May and Anthony Miranda, are pooling resources and expertise for the litigation.

The California Rifle & Pistol Association is now rallying for public support. Joining CRPA and contributing to their cause can aid in safeguarding Second Amendment rights.

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