By: José Niño
Federal District Court Judge Cormac Carney recently granted a preliminary injunction in federal court against California’s approved handgun roster.
In the case, Boland v. Bonta, several plaintiffs challenged the constitutional grounds of California’s approved handgun roster. As John Crump of AmmoLand observed, California’s state government “limits the handguns a firearms owner can purchase.” The handguns listed in this roster are firearms that companies submitted to the California Department of Justice for testing before 2013. Crump noted that these firearms “were drop tested, fired, and had other safety testing done.”
On top of that, California’s regulations have made it exceedingly difficult for new firearms to be listed on the roster due to the state’s current requirements for loaded chamber indicators, magazine disconnectors, and microstamping.
In his ruling, Judge Carney called attention to how the microstamping requirement has made it impossible for new semi-automatic handguns to be approved for sale in the Golden State:
“Since 2013, when the microstamping requirement was introduced, not a single new semiautomatic handgun has been approved for sale in California. That is because the technology effectuating microstamping on a broad scale is simply not technologically feasible and commercially practical. The result of this is that when Californians today buy a handgun at a store, they are largely restricted to models from over sixteen years ago,” Carney wrote in his decision.
In the decision, Carney asserted that lawful Californians have a right to possess a handgun. On top of that, Carney wrote that Californians have the right to access the latest and most cutting-edge firearms on the market. He believes that requirements that the state of California has imposed clearly infringed on the plaintiff’s right to bear arms.
The injunction order read as follows:
“Californians have the constitutional right to acquire and use state-of-the-art handguns to protect themselves. They should not be forced to settle for decade-old models of handguns to ensure that they remain safe inside or outside the home. But unfortunately, the UHA’s CLI, MDM, and microstamping requirements do exactly that. Because enforcing those requirements implicates the plain text of the Second Amendment, and the government fails to point to any well-established historical analogues that are consistent with them, those requirements are unconstitutional, and their enforcement must be preliminarily enjoined. Accordingly, Plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction is GRANTED.”
As of March 22, 2023, the preliminary injunction is expected to go into effect in 14 days. California is an anti-gun bastion through and through. According to Guns & Ammo magazine’s latest rankings for California, the state landed in a terrible 48th place. Democrats totally dominate state level politics. California not only has a Democratic governor, but it has solid supermajorities at the State Assembly (62-18) and State Senate (32-8). In sum, there aren’t going to be any pro-gun legislative changes happening in the Golden State anytime soon.
As a result, gun owners will have to rely on the courts to push back against gun control and restore gun rights. That’s the harsh reality of gun owners living in a one-party, Democratic state like California. Lawfare and the gradual nullification of gun control laws at the local level will be the only strategies at gun owners’ disposal to push back against Gun Control Inc.’s legislative machinations.