SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California lawmakers on Monday cleared Texas-style lawsuits over illegal guns, mimicking the Lone Star State’s abortion deterrent and the two most controversial U.S. Supreme Court rulings in history. linked last week.
California law would allow anyone to sue people who sell illegal firearms.
Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom sought the measure in part to amend the conservative wing of the U.S. Supreme Court, which gave preliminary approval to the Texas law allowing citizens to sue anyone who grants or aids abortion. The California bill would automatically be invalidated if the Texas law is ultimately declared unconstitutional.
Lawmakers acted days after the nation’s supreme court allowed states to ban abortionand separately extended gun rights in states, including California.
“What Texas did on abortion was dangerous, and we already know how disgusting the recent decision of the United States Supreme Court has been,” said Democratic Council member Mike Gipson. “But California will lead the way in this space in a very powerful and dynamic way. This is about empowering ordinary people who are on the brink of gun violence.”
The California Assembly approved the bill 50-19 Monday and sent it back to the Senate for a final vote. Senators already passed a version on 10-24 appeal in May. Newsom has said he expects lawmakers to bill him this week, before leaving for a month-long summer recess.
“This puts power back in the hands of the people,” Democratic Rep. Phil Ting said. “This creates a private right of action that allows almost anyone to sue those who manufacture, distribute, transport, import or sell illegal assault weapons, rifles, phantom weapons or ghost weapon kits.”
No legislator has spoken out against the measure.
But the bill has encountered unusual combined opposition from both gun owners’ rights organizations and the American Civil Liberties Union, which have separately criticized the creation of a bounty to encourage people to take civil action to punish crimes.
California law would allow people to sue anyone who distributes illegal assault weapons, parts that can be used to build weapons, unserialized rifles or .50 caliber rifles. They would get at least $10,000 in civil damages for each weapon, plus attorneys’ fees.
“We cannot stand by as California leaders escalate an ‘arms race’…by setting up bounty hunters on politically sensitive issues,” the ACLU said in a statement. an opposition letter† It’s also against Texas law, in part because both “would set a dangerous legal precedent” as both are designed to evade judicial review by allowing citizens to act rather than government officials.
The bill is one of four Newsom has requested from lawmakers in response to recent mass shootings, including one that killed 19 students and two teachers at a Texas elementary school in May.
The other three bills were all previously approved by the state assembly and two of the three passed through the Senate Monday, along with several other firearms laws.
The second account also empowers private individuals to take action, this time by suing gun manufacturers or dealers who fail to follow precautions under a “firearms industry code of conduct† Violators can be prosecuted by the Attorney General, city or county attorneys, or anyone who has suffered harm.
“Financial impacts could finally push the firearms industry and dealers to take more responsibility in improving their practices and complying with the array of gun laws we have here in California,” said Democratic Senator Robert Hertzberg, who introduced the bill in the United States. Senate wore.
Republican Senator Shannon Grove objected that lawmakers should instead focus on those who illegally acquire guns.
“I mean, we have car accidents,” Grove said. “That’s not the car dealership or the car manufacturer, it’s the guy who drives the car.”
The bill passed the Senate 25-9 and sent it to Newsom.
The third targets untraceable “ghost guns” by requiring precursor firearms parts to have serial numbers. It passed the Assembly 63-0 and awaits a vote in the Senate. It would give Californians who own guns without serial numbers six months to register them and add the numbers.
“Almost anyone can order these kits,” Democratic Senator Anthony Portantino said. “We must now eradicate the deadly, untraceable weapons that are currently wreaking havoc in our communities.”
The measure was passed by the Senate, 30-0, and will return to the Assembly for a final vote on amendments.
The fourth bill restricts firearms advertising to minors. It would also enable people who have been harmed by violations to claim damages.