Texas Senate Bill 8, the “Heartbeat Bill,” prohibits most abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected via ultrasound in the unborn child, usually six weeks into a pregnancy. It also prohibits individuals from assisting a person in obtaining an illegal abortion.
This is the law which California Gov. Gavin Newsom says authorizes him to allow Californians to sue those making, selling, transporting or distributing illegal assault weapons and “ghost guns.”
Apples and oranges. And it’s really convoluted.
“The California measure was written in a way that forces the Supreme Court to reconcile their decision on Texas’ law, when it decided not to block enforcement of the law in December. There’s no principled way for them to strike down this law and uphold Texas,” Newsom said.
“He [Newsom] can’t ban guns, but he’s going to try to bankrupt lawful firearms-related businesses,” Sam Paredes, executive director of Gun Owners of California, told the Associated Press in January.
As the Globe has reported, The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (2005) mostly protects manufacturers from lawsuits going after the gun rather than the person who pulled the trigger.
In late May, hours after the horrific Uvalde Texas school shooting, Gov. Gavin Newsom seized on the opportunity and held a press conference to announce he would be signing the 12 new gun control bills lawmakers happened to draft overnight, and said “when California moves, other states move.”
Just minutes into the press conference, Gov. Newsom said, “I wasn’t going to bring this up but…” and then he criticized Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s press conference earlier in the day. Newsom cited CDC statistics claiming that Texas has 67% more violent gun episodes than California.
Newsom wasn’t going to say anything, but happened to have CDC stats handy.
However, Gov. Newsom’s statistics are faulty, according to the Giffords Law Center.
According to the Giffords Law Center, gun violence in Texas isn’t 67% higher.
Total gun deaths in California: 3160 – Total gun deaths in Texas: 3647
Total suicides in California: 1595. – Total suicides in Texas: 2192 (the CDC and Giffords Center consider suicides “gun violence”)
Total homicides in California: 1431 – Total homicides in Texas: 1331
Total police shootings in California: 83 – Total police shootings in Texas: 43
California has more homicides and police shootings than Texas.
California already has some of the strictest gun laws in the country, yet there was a “mass shooting” only a few blocks from the Capitol in April, which turned out to be gang on gang. In fact, shootings in downtown Sacramento are a nightly occurrence now, and on weekends even more shootings take place.
Is this “gun violence,” because Gov. Newsom is silent about the escalating violent crime and gang shootings in Sacramento and the state, but laser-focused on gun control of lawful gun owners.
In May, the Associated Press reported, “California is giving 76,000 inmates, including violent and repeat felons, the opportunity to leave prison earlier as the state aims to further trim the population of what once was the nation’s largest state correctional system.”
“Violent felons are receiving good time credit for simply breathing, in lieu of demonstrated good behavior and rehabilitation,” Sen. Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber) said. “This is another ill-conceived policy of the Newsom Administration in its attempts to release convicted violent criminals back into our communities.”
Gavin Newsom is no better that LA District Attorney George Gascon who repeatedly lets violent criminals back out onto the street mere hours after a violent crime. Newsom survived his recall, but Gascon may not.
“Will more gun laws help?” a reporter asked Gov. Newsom at the May press conference. Then the reporter asked about hardening (security) at schools, while Gov. Newsom laughed.
Rather than answering, Newsom said, “we know these policies work to save lives.”
He refused to answer a really good question, and one which deserves an answer. But it doesn’t fit Newsom’s gun control agenda, so school children, be damned.
Another reporter addressed the gun control bill Newsom proposed, and signed into law, authored by Sen. Bob Hertzberger, SB 1327, which allows private citizens to sue gun manufacturers, modeling his proposal after the framework used in the Texas law banning abortions past six weeks. “How legally sound can this be?” the reporter asked.
“Don’t take my word for it, take the Supreme Court’s word. It’s modeled after the Texas abortion law,” Newsom said, again.
And here is where Newsom’s absence of logic stands out.
The Heritage Foundation says the Texas Heartbeat Act takes a novel approach. “Specifically, state officials may not enforce the law and are granted sovereign immunity against anyone seeking to bring suit on the grounds that the bill is contrary to constitutional law.”
“Instead, private citizens may bring a civil enforcement action against someone who performs an abortion in violation of the law or assists someone in obtaining an illegal abortion. Therefore, the only way for an abortion provider to claim a defense against application of the law is to wait for a private actor to sue, and then raise their contrary argument that the law itself is unconstitutional.”
So Gov. Newsom now claims the same, but with guns: “SB 1327 allows Californians to sue those making, selling, transporting or distributing illegal assault weapons and ghost guns – guns made at home to avoid tracing – for damages of at least $10,000 per weapon involved,” the governor said. “The same damages are also available against gun dealers who illegally sell firearms to those under 21 years of age. The legislation is modeled after Texas’ wrongheaded anti-abortion bill, SB 8, which places $10,000 bounties on doctors, providers and others involved in providing life-saving abortion care.”
Aborting unborn babies with heartbeats is considered murder by many. Suing gun manufacturers for selling scary looking guns is a real stretch and is a straw man argument.
“Attorneys general in nearly a dozen states and the District of Columbia have joined locally elected prosecutors from states across the country in pledging not to prosecute those who provide or receive abortions if their state legislature criminalizes the procedure,” the Heritage Foundation explains. “They join 68 prosecutors who published a statement, dated October 2020, which characterizes seeking an abortion as a woman’s ‘personal … choice’ about ‘[her] own health care’ and performing an abortion as ‘treatment’ by doctors.”
“The statement refers to abortion simply as an ‘issue’ without mentioning, as even the Supreme Court did in Roe, the unborn child that an abortion kills.”
Guns don’t kill. Criminals kill people sometimes using guns.
“With these new laws, California is protecting life, safety, and freedom,” said California Attorney General Rob Bonta, who never addresses the escalating violent crime in his state.
Newsom’s argument is so bad, even a reporter called his out at the May presser for conflating the Texas law banning abortions but allowing abortion providers to challenge the six-week ban, with California’s new law to allow private citizens to sue gun manufacturers.
“We need to get dangerous guns and weapons of war off the street,” Newsom said, not answering. And then he walked away. “Dangerous guns and weapons of war” are the culprits with Gavin Newsom, and not the criminals and gang members who use them on innocent victims and each other.
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