California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Saturday that his administration will push for a new measure, modeled after Texas’s controversial abortion ban, to limit the sale of assault weapons and “ghost guns” in the state.
The proposed bill, according to a press release from Newsom, would allow Californians to sue “anyone who manufactures, distributes, or sells an assault weapon or ghost gun kit or parts” for damages — the same injunction-skirting mechanism Texas has used to ban all abortions after six weeks, which has so far been permitted by the Supreme Court.
“If that’s the precedent then we’ll let Californians sue those who put ghost guns and assault weapons on our streets,” Newsom said in a tweet Saturday. “If TX can ban abortion and endanger lives, CA can ban deadly weapons of war and save lives.”
Newsom’s statement comes on the heels of a Friday Supreme Court ruling, which further entrenched Texas’s ability to ban virtually all abortions in the state, despite allowing a suit against Texas state health officials to advance. As Vox’s Ian Millhiser explained:
The upshot of this decision is that, while the abortion provider plaintiffs in Jackson may be able to get a federal court order declaring that SB 8 is unconstitutional, the only real relief they are likely to win is an order preventing a few state health officials from carrying out the minor role they play in enforcing the law. The most important provisions of the law — the ones that effectively prevent anyone from performing an abortion after the sixth week of pregnancy by threatening them with financial ruin if they do so — will most likely remain in effect.
Currently, few details are known about the proposed California legislation other than its enforcement mechanism; according to Newsom’s announcement, plaintiffs suing firearms manufacturers could be awarded at least $10,000, plus attorney’s fees if they win their case. As the LA Times reports, however, the California State Assembly and Attorney General Rob Bonta won’t be able to move on putting together a bill until January 3, when the legislature reconvenes after the holiday break.
SB 8, the law that Newsom references in Saturday’s announcement, hinges on a novel, convoluted enforcement scheme. Though it functionally bans all abortions after a mere six weeks of pregnancy, Texas officials are prohibited from directly enforcing the law, according to its text. Instead, SB 8 is constructed so that an individual — who doesn’t even have to be a Texas resident or have anything to do with the abortion in question — can sue an abortion provider or someone suspected of aiding an abortion performed after the six-week window.
Story continues at: newsom