The bill allows anyone to sue a gun dealer or manufacturer that sells or makes a gun already illegal under California law.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (CN) — California Governor Gavin Newsom on Tuesday signed one of two bills passed by the Legislature allowing private rights of action against gun dealers and manufacturers — strengthening the Golden State’s already strict gun laws while taking a swipe at a similar law in Texas that goes after abortion.
Lawmakers passed two bills involving private rights of action this term — Assembly Bill 1594 and Senate Bill 1327 — though Newsom has so far only signed AB 1594. Both pieces of legislation were modeled after Texas Senate Bill 8 which allows individuals to sue anyone who performs or aids in the obtainment of an abortion.
“To the victims of gun violence and their families: California stands with you. The gun industry can no longer hide from the devastating harm their products cause,” Newsom said when signing the bill. “Our kids, families and communities deserve streets free of gun violence and gun makers must be held accountable for their role in this crisis. Nearly every industry is held liable when people are hurt or killed by their products — guns should be no different.”
AB 1594 would allow individuals, groups, communities, the California attorney general and others to file a civil suit against a gun dealer or manufacturer that sells or produces a firearm that creates an unreasonable risk of harm to public health and safety, mainly assault firearms and other firearms not allowed under state law. The law also bars guns from being marketed to youth.
The American Civil Liberties Union has voiced concern about both pieces of legislation and sent an open letter to the Legislature and Newsom arguing that private rights of