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Dems Suffer Huge Loss In California As Federal Judge Overturns CA’s Assault Weapons Ban

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U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez of San Diego just handed California Dems a huge loss and overturned California’s ban on assault weapons. Assault weapons have been banned in California since 1989.

In his ruling, Benitez ripped the media saying: “One is to be forgiven if one is persuaded by news media and others that the nation is awash with murderous AR-15 assault rifles. The facts, however, do not support this hyperbole, and facts matter. Like the Swiss Army Knife, the popular AR-15 rifle is a perfect combination of home defense weapon and homeland defense equipment,” 

Benitez added that “Firearms deemed as ‘assault weapons’ are fairly ordinary, popular, modern rifles.” Gavin Newsom said: “Overturning CA’s assault weapon ban and comparing an AR-15 to a swiss army knife is a disgusting slap in the face to those who have lost loved ones to gun violence. This is a direct threat to public safety and innocent Californians. We won’t stand for it.”

The judge wrote: “Plaintiffs challenge California Penal Code §§ 30515(a)(1) through (8) (defining an “assault weapon” by prohibited features), 30800 (deeming certain “assault weapons” a public nuisance), 30915 (regulating “assault weapons” obtained by bequest or nheritance), 30925 (restricting importation of “assault weapons” by new residents), 30945 (restricting use of registered “assault weapons”), and 30950 (prohibiting possession of “assault weapons” by minors).

“It is declared that these statutes unconstitutionally infringe the Second Amendment rights of California citizens. These statutes and the penalty provisions §§ 30600, 30605 and 30800 as applied to “assault weapons” defined in Code §§ 30515(a)(1) through (8) are hereby enjoined.

“You might not know it, but this case is about what should be a muscular constitutional right and whether a state can force a gun policy choice that impinges on that right with a 30-year-old failed experiment. It should be an easy question and answer.

“Government is not free to impose its own new policy choices on American citizens where Constitutional rights are concerned. As Heller explains, the Second Amendment takes certain policy choices and removes them beyond the realm of permissible state action. California may certainly conceive of a policy that a modern rifle is dangerous in the hands of a criminal, and that therefore it is good public policy to keep modern rifles out of the hands of every citizen.

“The Second Amendment stands as a shield from government imposition of that policy.

“There is only one policy enshrined in the Bill of Rights. Guns and ammunition in the hands of criminals, tyrants and terrorists are dangerous; guns in the hands of lawabiding responsible citizens are better.

“To give full life to the core right of self-defense, every law-abiding responsible individual citizen has a constitutionally protected right to keep and bear firearms commonly owned and kept for lawful purposes.

“In early America and today, the Second Amendment right of self-preservation permits a citizen to “‘repel force by force’ when ‘the intervention of society in his behalf, may be too late to prevent that injury.’” Heller, 554 U.S., at 594.

“Then, as now, the Second Amendment “may be considered as the true palladium of liberty.” Id. at 606 (citation omitted). Unfortunately, governments tend to restrict the right of self-defense. “[I]n most governments it has been the study of rulers to confine the right within the narrowest limits possible.” Id. (citation omitted).

“Fortunately, no legislature has the constitutional authority to dictate to a good citizen that he or she may not acquire a modern and popular gun for self-defense.

“The Court does not lightly enjoin a state statute. However, while the Court is mindful that government has a legitimate interest in protecting the public from gun violence, it is equally mindful that the Constitution remains a shield from the tyranny of the majority. As Senator Edward Kennedy said, “[t]he judiciary is – and is often the only – protector of individual rights that are at the heart of our democracy.”

“Law-abiding citizens are imbued with the unalienable right to keep and bear modern firearms.

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:

“Defendant Attorney General Rob Bonta, and his officers, agents, servants, employees, and attorneys, and those persons in active concert or participation with him, and those duly sworn state peace officers and federal law enforcement officers who gain knowledge of this injunction order or know of the existence of this injunction order, are enjoined from implementing or enforcing the California Penal Code §§ 30515(a)(1) through (8) (defining an “assault weapon” by prohibited features), 30800 (deeming those “assault weapons” a public nuisance), 30915 (regulating those “assault weapons” obtained by bequest or inheritance), 30925 (restricting importation of those “assault weapons” by new residents), 30945 (restricting use of those registered “assault weapons”), and 30950 (prohibiting possession of those “assault weapons” by minors) and the penalty provisions §§ 30600, 30605 and 30800 as applied to “assault weapons” defined in Code §§ 30515(a)(1) through (8).

“Defendant Attorney General Rob Bonta shall provide forthwith, by personal service or otherwise, actual notice of this order to all law enforcement personnel who are responsible for implementing or enforcing the enjoined statute. Within 10 days, the government shall file a declaration establishing proof of such notice. Alternatively, the parties may file a stipulation.

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