California’s all-out attack on Second Amendment rights ran into a speed bump last week. U.S. District Court Judge Roger Benitez ruled that the state’s ban on gun magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds is unconstitutional.
For the second time, Benitez declared that law-abiding citizens have this right. He flatly stated that there is not a historical precedent to prohibiting this liberty from Californians who may legally possess weapons.
The Cuban-born judge wrote that “removable firearm magazines of all sizes are necessary components of semiautomatic firearms.” This puts them within the constitutional protection against infringing on the right to keep and bear arms.
Benitez noted that tens of millions of these magazines are owned by citizens for legal purposes — including self-defense. He also observed that “they are reasonably related to service in the militia.”
California launched the campaign against larger magazines with a 2016 ballot initiative. This simultaneously triggered a legal battle that has twice come before Benitez.
He initially ruled in 2017 that the ban ran afoul of the Constitution, but a series of legal maneuvers put the issue back before him last week.
JUST IN: Federal judge STRIKES DOWN California law banning high-capacity gun magazines..
U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez ruled "there is no American tradition of limiting ammunition capacity."
"There have been, and there will be, times where many more than 10 rounds are… pic.twitter.com/LjnQbIpwyP
— Chuck Callesto (@ChuckCallesto) September 23, 2023
Benitez charged that the government should not allow the actions of “a few madmen” to interfere with the ability of law-abiding people to protect themselves.
This reasonable stance drew a sharp rebuke from radical Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom. He smeared Benitez as a “right-wing zealot with no regard to human life.”
Writing on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, the governor railed against what he described as “NRA-owned federal judges.”
Newsom said the state’s gun safety laws will not stand “until we pass a constitutional amendment to protect our kids and end the gun violence epidemic in America.”
The governor, who has clear aspirations for higher office, recently proposed a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It would make the failed gun control policies of his state the law of the land.
Incidentally, California has what most believe to be the toughest gun control laws in the nation. Also, according to FBI data, it also ranks number one in active shooter incidents. That is not an “honor” other areas want the Golden State to export to them.
Newsom’s Attorney General, Rob Bonta, immediately filed a notice of appeal. It is likely that the state ban on larger magazines will remain in place while this action winds through the court system.