California Democrats claim historic sweeping new restrictions will keep guns out of the hands of criminals.
Using the San Bernardino terrorist attack as the reason this was necessary, California lawmakers in the state Senate approved 11 new bills Thursday to beef up their already-strict gun control laws, including mandatory background checks for buying ammunition and outlawing the manufacture and sale of semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines, as well as semiautomatic center-fire rifles with “bullet buttons.”
To become law, the bills must go through the Assembly and then be signed by Governor Jerry Brown. Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon has already said he is committed to pushing them through.
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Senate President Kevin De Leon said, “Gun violence has reach epidemic proportions across the nation. These proposals take common sense steps to keep weapons and ammunition out of the hands of criminals.”
“The criminals will not be affected,” state Sen. Jim Nielsen of Gerber said during the floor debate. “They will not pay any attention to these bills. These bills disarm the law-abiding public.”
State Sen. Ted Gaines (R-Rocklin) said the bills are “an assault on our 2nd Amendment rights.”
According to the LA Times, other bills approved Thursday by the Senate would:
— Require owners of homemade guns to get a serial number for the firearms, register them with the state and undergo a background check.
— Ask voters in November to reverse a provision of 2014’s Proposition 47 that made thefts of guns worth $950 or less a misdemeanor. The measure would allow felony charges in all gun theft cases. Republicans supported this measure.
— Mandate that gun owners report lost or stolen firearms to the authorities within five days of discovery that they are missing. Some straw purchasers illegally sell guns and then later claim they were stolen.
— Limit lending of firearms to specified family members.
— Establish a Firearm Violence Research Center at one of the University of California campuses to study potential policies to reduce shooting deaths and injuries.
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