The national push for gun control is coming to the Golden State this week, as Democrats in Sacramento begin their push for legislation that would require California gun owners to purchase liability insurance.
CA Dems Want Gun Owners to Buy Liability Insurance: Some California Democratic lawmakers are introducing a bill … bit.ly/11KYtk8
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) February 6, 2013
Sacramento Assemblyman Philip Ting (AD19) and Los Angeles Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez (AD51) introduced AB231 Tuesday, making California the latest state to attempt to require gun owners to purchase insurance for potential injuries from their firearms. The bill would apply to owners of all weapons in the state, not just purchased weapons moving forward. Other states have tried similar legislation in the past decade, but none have succeeded.
Assemblyman Ting cited concern both for gun safety and for taxpayers as his motivations for pushing the gun control bill. “I was moved, like many others, being the father of two young children, by the Sandy Hook incident and looking for constructive ways to manage gun violence here in California as well as the rest of the country. There’s basically a cost that is born by the taxpayers when accidents occur. … I don’t think that taxpayers should be footing those bills.”
But gun rights advocates, and Californians skeptical of Democrats’ sudden concern for taxpayers, aren’t buying it.
Sam Paredes, executive director of Gun Owners of California, labeled the bill “part of an ongoing attempt to price gun owners out of existence,” and challenged the constitutionality of such a law – chiefly that the government may not be able to require a citizen to purchase something in order to exercise a constitutional right. “I guarantee they’ll have to address it in court,” Paredes said, if the constitutional questions are not addressed in the legislature. The NRA already offers gun liability insurance to its members who are looking for it.
Paredes also argued that the law would disproportionately hurt minorities and low-income residents of crime-ridden areas who would not be able to afford the insurance requirement.
“As a California resident, I find the Democrat lawmakers’ sudden concern for taxpayers here…well, I tell you when I’m done laughing,” Stephen Kruiser, a comedian and long-time conservative activist in California, wrote in a piece Tuesday evening for PJ Media.
Whether more Democrats will hop on board and support a mandatory requirement for California gun owners to purchase gun insurance is unclear.