Saturday, June 5, 2021

I Doubt It Will Survive the 9th Circus

 6/4/21 KMPH:

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A federal judge has overturned California’s three-decade-old ban on assault weapons, ruling that it violates the constitutional right to bear arms.

U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez of San Diego ruled Friday that the state’s definition of illegal military-style rifles unlawfully deprives law-abiding Californians of weapons commonly allowed in most other states.

The State has 30 days to appeal or the law dies.   Here is the opinion.  Read it.  It will make your day.  It is a masterpiece.  

Judge Beneitz puts the burden on California to demonstrate that the ban reduced murders, mass murders, anything within the legitimate interests of the State.  

The number of California mass murders with assault weapons is unchanged since passage of the law.

The State's strongest argument is that these weapons are very accurate when firing quickly.  This is also in the public's interest.  If you are defending your home, you are responsible for every bullet you fire, so make sure that they hit a criminal and not a bystander.

He goes over the list of features that make guns assault weapons and points out that none of these features makes them especially good for mass murder or criminal activity, at least no more so than for defensive use.

He demolishes the State's expert witnesses, demonstrating that they are using untrustworthy methods of gathering data.  Neither the State nor its experts made use of police reports, just news accounts.  If anyone would have access to police reports it would be the California Attorney-General.

He points to multiple defensive uses of assault weapons around the country.

The most that the expert testimony might justify is a ban on larger magazines, although he does not suggest that.


  1. Almost certainly not, and if it does, then I'm sure we will see episode of en banc comedy play out. But the real point is to be overturned in the 9th CA, and then it is "Forward ho!" to SCOTUS.

    I wonder if the California AG will come under pressure not to appeal in order to avoid a nationwide precedent?

  2. Judge Benitez seems like a 3D chess kind of guy:

    The ruling came out on June 4th, which was "National Gun Violence Awareness Day". His stay ends on July 4th.