Texas abortion law inspires anti-gun legislation
California Governor Gavin Newsom has announced a plan to allow private citizens to sue “assault weapon” manufacturers, and claims he is exercising the same legal authority behind Texas’ controversial abortion law.
“If states can shield their laws from review by federal courts, then [California] will use that authority to help protect lives, where Texas used it to put women in harm’s way,” Newsom’s office announced over the weekend.
Newsom’s staff are now drafting a bill with the state’s attorney general that will allow private citizens “to seek injunctive relief, and statutory damages of at least $10,000 per violation.”
Those who may be sued will include anyone who “manufactures, distributes, or sells an assault weapon or ghost gun kit or parts” in the state of California. “Ghost gun kits” refer to parts sold individually and used to construct a weapon that cannot therefore be traced. Although “assault weapon” typically refers to a fully automatic weapon, gun-control advocates often also refer to semi-automatic weapons such as AR-15-style rifles as “assault” rifles or “assault-style” rifles.
If states can shield their laws from review by federal courts, then CA will use that authority to help protect lives.We will work to create the ability for private citizens to sue anyone who manufactures, distributes, or sells an assault weapon or ghost gun kit or parts in CA. pic.twitter.com/YPBJ00vN6z— Office of the Governor of California (@CAgovernor) December 12, 2021
Newsom said his decision was prompted by his “outrage” at the Supreme Court’s recent decision to uphold a controversial Texas law that prohibits abortion once cardiac activity can be found in a fetus, which can be as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. The bill also opens the door for lawsuits against anyone who “aids or abets” an illegal abortion, hence the potential impact beyond Texas’s borders, on the likes of California.
SCOTUS is letting private citizens in Texas sue to stop abortion?!If that's the precedent then we'll let Californians sue those who put ghost guns and assault weapons on our streets.If TX can ban abortion and endanger lives, CA can ban deadly weapons of war and save lives. https://t.co/N5Iur9PEUZ— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) December 12, 2021
A previous prohibition in California on “assault-style” weapons was overturned by a federal judge in June.
Newsom also previously promised that California would act as a “sanctuary” for women seeking abortions and facing restrictions or bans in other states.