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California waiting period ruled unconstitutional

Californian's may no longer need to wait 10 days when buying firearms
Californian's may no longer need to wait 10 days when buying firearmsMike Searson

California’s 10-day waiting period for firearm purchases was ruled unconstitutional by a federal judge this week in a significant victory for Second Amendment civil rights. The laws were challenged by California firearm owners Jeffrey Silvester and Brandon Combs, as well as two gun rights groups, The Calguns Foundation and Second Amendment Foundation.

Federal Eastern District of California Senior Judge Anthony W. Ishii, appointed to the bench by President Bill Clinton, found that “the 10-day waiting periods of Penal Code [sections 26815(a) and 27540(a)] violate the Second Amendment” as applied to members of certain classifications, like Silvester and Combs, and “burdens the Second Amendment rights of the Plaintiffs.”

“This is a great win for Second Amendment civil rights and common sense,” said Jeff Silvester, the named individual plaintiff. “I couldn’t be happier with how this case turned out.”

Under the court order, the California Department of Justice (DOJ) must change its systems to accommodate the unobstructed release of firearms to buyers who pass a background check and possess either a California license to carry a handgun, or who hold a “Certificate of Eligibility” issued by the DOJ and already possess at least one firearm known to the state.

“We are happy that Second Amendment rights are being acknowledged and protected by our courts,” said Donald Kilmer, lead attorney for the plaintiffs. “This case is one more example of how our judicial branch brings balance to government in order to insure our liberty. I am elated that we were able to successfully vindicate the rights of our clients.”

“This ruling clearly addressed the issue we put before the court,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb. “We are naturally delighted with the outcome.”

“California gun owners are not second-class citizens and the Second Amendment doesn’t protect second class rights,” noted plaintiff Brandon Combs, also CGF’s executive director. “This decision is an important step towards restoring fundamental individual liberties in the Golden State.”

“This victory provides a strong foundation from which other irrational and unconstitutional gun control laws will be challenged,” concluded Combs. “We look forward to doing just that.”

The court’s decision can be read here. California's DOJ has 180 days to implement the changes.