California’s governor and attorney general has pledged to pass new gun control measures after the U.S. Supreme Court weakened states’ ability to impose limits on concealed carry permits. They said the new bills would help “keep Californians safe.”
The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 Thursday that Americans have the right to carry a handgun in public, overturning a law in New York that limited who could carry a gun outside their homes. The state was one of the few to require someone to prove why they needed protection outside the home to get a license, and the ruling will likely make it easier to carry guns in some of the big cities. cities in the country.
The decision joined by the six members of the court’s conservative bloc will effectively force five other states – California, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts and New Jersey – to rewrite their gun laws as well.
California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) was quick to blast the decision, saying it was a ‘radical move’ which he would fight, expressing his opposition to those who ‘coddle the gun industry’ . The governor promised the state would move forward with 16 new gun safety bills next week, including legislation that would allow people to sue manufacturers and sellers of guns for violating gun laws.
“While this reckless move erases a common sense gun safety law that had existed for decades, California anticipated this moment,” Newsom said in a statement Thursday. “But make no mistake: this is a radical decision. Today’s Court believes that gun regulations should be frozen in time, and that if there was no similar law in the 1700s or 1800s, then a state cannot adopt now, however important it is to protect people from the modern horror of gun violence.
State Attorney General Rob Bonta said he remains committed to protecting citizens, noting that state law still requires Californians to have a license before carrying a loaded firearm in public.
“In the wake of the mass shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde, and with the record number of gun deaths, it is more important than ever to ensure that dangerous individuals are not allowed to carry firearms. concealed,” Bonta said. “The data is clear and the consequences are dire – more guns in more places makes us less safe.”
Bonta conceded that the state’s requirement that gun owners provide a “good reason” for obtaining a concealed weapons license is likely overruled after the court ruling.
Newsom had already pledged to speed up the passage of new gun control laws after the latest round of massacres. Some laws include emergency clauses. These bills would have to pass with a two-thirds vote in each chamber of the state legislature and would immediately become law with the governor’s signature, the Los Angeles Times noted.
The Supreme Court’s decision came just weeks after devastating mass shootings at a market in Buffalo, New York, and at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. These massacres have reignited conversations around the epidemic of gun violence in the United States.
The Senate on Thursday passed a bipartisan package to reduce gun violence, the most significant gun safety bill in three decades. While it does not include the broader restrictions sought by gun control advocates, such as a ban on assault weapons or an increase in the minimum age to purchase semi-automatic rifles, it does depicts fierce negotiations on both sides of the aisle. The bill, which is expected to pass the House on Friday, includes modest restrictions on getting firearms and also increases funding for mental health care and school safety.