As expected, a Ninth Circuit three-judge panel has issued a stay of US District Court Judge Roger T. Benitez’s ruling that California’s “assault weapons” ban is unconstitutional. The state has appealed the decision and the panel’s stay ensures that the ban will remain in place until the Ninth Circuit appeals process plays out.
From the Los Angles Times . . .
Benitez overturned the California ban but gave the state 30 days to challenge the decision. The 9th Circuit, acting on a June 10 appeal filed by Atty. Gen. Rob Bonta, put Benitez’s ruling on hold pending a full-blown decision.
“This leaves our assault weapons laws in effect while appellate proceedings continue,” Bonta said said in a tweet. “We won’t stop defending these life-saving laws.”
California’s “assault weapons” ban has been in place for 30 years. In that time, the kinds of rifles covered under the state’s ban are now — as the late Justice Scalia might have described them — in common use, with more than 20 million of them owned throughout the country according to the NSSF. The actual number is probably much higher.
Twenty-two states, led by Arizona, which is under the 9th Circuit’s jurisdiction, asked the appeals court to uphold the order against California’s law.
“Calling modern rifles ‘assault weapons’ is a misnomer— they are most often used by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes like personal protection or target and sport shooting,” the states argued. “There is nothing sinister about citizens keeping or bearing a modern rifle.”
Joining Arizona were the state of Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Watch this space.