Senate Democrats approved a far-reaching series of gun control bills in California Thursday in an attempt to make the state’s already strict gun laws considerably harsher.
The tightened measures that legislators voted on to make the sale of assault firearms with easily detachable magazines illegal are taking place just months after the San Bernardino jihadist terrorist attack that killed 14. Lawmakers also voted to force California residents to turn in any ammunition magazines they have that are capable of holding more than 10 rounds.
Additional measures approved by the state’s Left-leaning Senate include ones geared to limit the access of guns and ammunition — in a so-called effort to tone down the amount of carnage such weapons can inflict if used in a terrorist attack.
The strict gun control bills were greatly criticized by advocates of gun rights, who argue that making it more difficult for lawful gun owners to purchase firearms will do nothing to make it safer for California residents.
The approval also drew an even further divide between senior Democrats in California who differ greatly in both strategy and personality when it comes to Second Amendment issues.
“Legislative leaders are rushing to head off a ballot measure advocated by Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, a fellow Democrat, asking voters to enact many of the same policies,” the Associate Press reports. “They worry the initiative will fail at the ballot box or fire up gun rights supporters, potentially increasing turnout of conservative voters who could give Republicans an edge in close districts.”
Both sides are doing all they can to counter the strategies of their opponents.
“California’s assault-weapon ban prohibits new rifles with magazines that can be detached without the aid of tools,” the AP report continued. “To get around the law, gun makers developed so called bullet buttons that allow a shooter to quickly dislodge the magazine using the tip of a bullet or other small tool.”
But progressives in the Senate are doing all they can to use the recent terrorist attack to their advantage and limit the rights of gun owners.
“They are designed only to facilitate the maximum destruction of human life,” argued the co-author of California’s bullet-button ban, Sen. Isadore Hall (D-Compton).
Working to Hall’s advantage, it was revealed that the two handguns and two rifles confiscated by police following the San Bernardino are currently sold with the bullet buttons that are under debate.
Even though California gun control laws will allow residents who already own magazines that hold 10 more rounds to keep them, it is illegal for anyone in the state to sell such magazines — or for anyone to bring them into the state. After Thursday’s vote by California senators, however, gun owners will be forced to turn in their high-capacity magazines if they don’t want to be breaking the law.
It is argued by many proponents of gun control laws that certain features will curb terrorist attacks, but not all Democrats agree that more measures limiting gun rights are helping to solve the problem.
“Outlawing bullet buttons and high-capacity magazines is a priority for gun control advocates, who hope that making it harder to reload would slow down a shooter and give bystanders time to escape or intervene,” the AP report states. “[However,] Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown in 2013 vetoed the Legislature’s last attempt to ban bullet buttons, saying it was too far-reaching. A high-capacity magazine ban failed in the state Assembly that year.”
Following a longstanding trend, Democrats are continuing their push to get guns off the streets at all costs, while Republicans relentlessly fight for Americans’ right to bear arms and protect themselves, in accordance with the Second Amendment to the United States’ Constitution.
“Gun ownership is a constitutional bedrock,” Sen. Ted Gaines, (R-El Dorado Hills) contended. “We can’t smash the 2nd Amendment into a million pieces and expect America to be as free and strong as it’s always been.”
A parade of gun control bills
Among the 11 bills approved by California Senate Democrats in the name of gun control are background checks for ammunition purchases, a ban on loaning guns to friends, a mandate to report lost or stolen firearms, funding for a gun-violence research center, and restrictions for homemade firearms.
The gun control vs. gun rights debate is also expected to play out and take center stage in the political arena as California voters hit the ballot box.
“The debate in the Senate comes as Newsom — a Democrat running for governor in 2018 — is advocating a November gun control ballot measure incorporating many of the policies the Senate backed Thursday,” AP reporters announced. “Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon (D-Los Angeles) said he’s also concerned that presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign will drive more right-leaning voters to the polls and imperil the gun-control initiative.”
The gun-control activist elaborated about his fear that Trump would threaten the Democrats’ attempt to take guns out of the hands of California residents. De Leon stated that he wants to preclude Californians from participating in the democratic process by bypassing a vote and letting lawmakers resolve the issue without them.
“I think it’s too risky to put a lot of hard work — decades of hard work — before the voters of California,” de Leon expressed. “We don’t know if it passes or not. But if we can get it done in the legislative body, the question is, why not do it?”
In an attempt to collaborate with Newsom, de Leon requested him to delay his initiative so that the state legislature could resolve the problem, but the gubernatorial hopeful refused.
But a united front of Democrats is still moving to bulldoze its gun control agenda forward.
“The measures go to the State Assembly, where Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Paramount) and other Democrats have publicly backed some of the policies approved by the Senate,” AP reporters explained. “But they could face a roadblock with moderate Democrats, who have watered down or halted legislation from the more liberal Senate.”
Campaign strategist Dan Newman, who is pushing the gun control initiative, insists that it is introducing a new strategy to keep track of ammunition purchases — one that also forces vendors to report ammunition that is lost or stolen.
“It’s one of those situations where more is more,” Newman claims. “The NRA is so powerful, and the gun violence tragedies are so frequent and so horrific, we need to take bold action in every way possible.”
On the pro-gun rights side of the debate, Firearms Policy Coalition Legislative Advocate Craig DeLuz offered harsh criticism aimed at the Senate’s decision to rush legislation so that they could get it out in time to beat Newsom’s deadline to retract the initiative he proposed.
“It is nothing short of unconscionable that millions of law-abiding Californians are being used as chess pieces in a twisted political game to see who can race to the bottom first,” DeLuz argued.
Copyright American Family News. Reprinted with permission.