Attorneys representing the Second Amendment Foundation and its partners in the case of Jones v. Bonta, challenging a California law restricting the rights of young adults to purchase long guns, are asking the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for an “All Writ” enjoining the state from enforcing a new state law that penalizes plaintiffs in cases contesting state gun laws.
SAF is joined by the Calguns Foundation, Firearms Policy Foundation, Firearms Policy Coalition, Inc., North County Shooting Center, Inc., Beebe Family Arms, and Munitions, LLC, Poway Weapons and Gear and PWG Range, Thomas Furrh, Kyle Yamamoto, and Matthew Jones.
They are represented by attorneys David H. Thompson, Peter A. Patterson, John D. Ohlendorf, and Haley N. Proctor at Cooper and Kirk PLLC, and John W. Dillon, Dillon Law Group, APC.
According to the All Writs petition, “This case concerns California laws that restrict the rights of 18-to-20-year-old law-abiding adults to purchase long guns. Plaintiffs seek a declaration that these restrictions violate the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and a preliminary and permanent injunction against their enforcement.”
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The petition asks the court to prevent the state from enforcing provisions in Senate Bill 1327, passed earlier this year, specifically Section 2 of the law, which applies only to suits that seek “declaratory or injunctive relief” against the enforcement of any “law that regulates or restricts firearms.”
Plaintiffs respectfully request that the Court issue a writ pursuant to its authority under 28 U.S.C. § 1651 enjoining Defendants from initiating a future action to obtain costs and attorneys’ fees under Section 2 regardless of the outcome of the present action, the petition states.
“We are taking this unusual step because of the chilling effect this new law has on challenges to state gun laws,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “Section 2 of the new statute is preempted by the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution. It violates the First Amendment which, among other things, protects the right of the people to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
“As we note in our petition,” he added, “without access to the courts, citizens cannot defend any of their rights. Contrary to what the state may argue, this isn’t about guns, it’s about rights.
“The California Legislature and Gov. Gavin Newsom may think they can ride roughshod over the Constitution,” Gottlieb observed, “but they really can’t, and we’re hoping the court quickly erases any doubt.”
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Free Press.