September 1st, 2010

Three Anti-Gun Bills Defeated in California Legislature

California Rifle Pistol AssociationDespite last-minute efforts by their authors to secure passage, three proposed California laws restricting gun rights went down to defeat yesterday in Sacramento. Tuesday, August 31st, was the final day this year’s session of the California Legislature could pass new laws.

The fight went all the way to the midnight deadline for passage, but AB 1810, AB 1934, and AB 2358 were defeated — at least for this year. As the clock ticked down to midnight, the bills’ sponsors could not secure enough votes to pass the bills. In a state where Democratic Party legislators have rammed through anti-gun bills year after year, this is a significant victory for firearms rights. All three of these bills posed a fundamental threat to the rights of gun owners.

AB 1810 — Mandatory Registration of Long Guns
If enacted, Assembly Bill 1810 would have required registration of rifles and shotguns in the same way handguns are now registered in California. Under current law, the information collected at the time of purchase of a rifle or shotgun (serial number, make, and model) is destroyed after the background check is completed. AB 1810 would have required that the make, model, and serial number of the firearm, as well as the identifying information of the purchaser, be recorded and kept on file by the California Department of Justice.

AB 1934 — Prohibition of Open Carry of Unloaded Handguns
AB 1934 would have deleted provisions of current California law that allows an unloaded firearm to be carried openly in a belt holster. With some important restrictions, “Open Carry” remains legal in many areas of California. Organized “open carry” gatherings by Second Amendment supporters drew media attention, putting this issue in the limelight. Anti-gunners simply could not tolerate the idea that someone could carry a firearm in public places without going to jail. AB 1934 would basically place the entire state “off-limits” to open carry, eliminating a long-standing right in California.

AB 2358 — Collection of Information on Ammunition Purchasers
AB 2358 would have required that ammunition vendors provide detailed information on ammo sales to local law enforcement if required by city or county ordinance records. In addition to records of the date and type of ammo purchased, AB 2358 would force ammunition vendors to give police the names, address, and other personal information of all ammo purchasers. AB 2358 would have also allowed uncontrolled expansion of city and county ordinances requiring handgun ammunition vendors to transmit all information collected relating to sales of handgun ammunition and some rifle cartridges to local law enforcement agencies.

We applaud the California Legislators who voted against these three bills. Hopefully, this is the beginning of a change in the Golden State — perhaps inspired by the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling that the Second Amendment protects the right of ALL Americans to keep and bear arms. We also commend the work of the California Rifle & Pistol Association, whose staffers organized opposition to AB 1810, AB 1934, and AB 2358. For all friends of the Second Amendment, and for all Californians involved in the shooting sports, this is a time to celebrate.