U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez issued a preliminary injunction on Thursday, blocking a California law that would have compelled all gun owners in the state to rid themselves of any high-capacity ammo magazines they might have in their possession. In the ruling, which came down in a San Diego courtroom, Judge Benitez found that the law – approved by voters last year – was likely in violation of the Second Amendment because it prevented citizens from using “whatever common magazine size he or she judges best for the situation.”
“The State of California’s desire to criminalize simple possession of a firearm magazine able to hold more than 10 rounds is precisely the type of policy choice that the Constitution takes off the table,” said Benitez in issuing the injunction.
The judge’s ruling is not the last word on the law, but Benitez said that plaintiffs – including the NRA-affiliated California & Pistol Association – were well within their legal rights to request that the law be blocked until a final decision can be reached.
“A final decision will take too long to offer relief,” he wrote, “and because the statute will soon visit irrevocable harm on Plaintiffs and all those similarly situated, a state-wide preliminary injunction is necessary and justified to maintain the status quo.”
The ban on large-capacity magazines is part of last year’s referendum, Proposition 63, which comes with a variety of restrictions on firearms and ammunition. In a statement, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said the state would continue to fight to see the law implemented as written.
“Proposition 63 was overwhelmingly approved by voters to increase public safety and enhance security in a sensible and constitutional way,” Becerra said. “Restricting large capacity magazines and preventing them from ending up in the wrong hands is critical for the well-being of our communities.”
It certainly is not, a fact reflected in the overwhelming opposition the referendum received from law enforcement agencies around the state. The California State Sheriffs’ Association, the California Fish & Game Wardens’ Association, and the Association of Deputy District Attorneys for Los Angeles County are just three of the many police and civic groups who opposed the law. Many of them argued that the law would only redirect precious resources towards prosecuting law-abiding sportsmen and gun owners while doing next-to-nothing to stop actual criminals.
And of course, that’s almost always the way when it comes to these poorly conceived Second Amendment end-arounds.
These liberals can’t touch the guns, so now they’re going after the ammunition. Thankfully, the courts aren’t buying it.