21 February, 2018
The Supreme Court is rejecting two challenges by guns rights groups to California laws regulating firearms' sales.
In an unsigned order, the court let stand a ruling upholding California's law mandating a 10-day waiting period and another imposing fees on firearm transactions to fund background checks.
He said that California made no "attempt to defend a 10-day waiting period", and noted that the background-check process creates a natural 24-hour waiting period for 80 percent of purchasers.
Political pundits have savaged a NY magazine article re-litigating the case for Supreme Court associate justice Clarence Thomas' impeachment, which purportedly cites new evidence Thomas lied under oath about Anita Hill during his confirmation hearing.
Abramson said Thomas' tenure on the court has been "devastating for women's rights", and highlighted his votes on cases involving equal-pay protections and employers' religious objections to supplying birth control. Plaintiffs Jeff Silvester and Brandon Combs argue that the waiting period is unconstitutional when it comes to people who already legally have guns and a concealed carry permit, because background checks don't take that long, and a cooling off period wouldn't stop them from using a weapon they already have.
The National Rifle Association and state gun rights advocates argued the law violates the Second Amendment because the criminal misuse of firearms targeted by the APPS is not sufficiently related to the legal acquisition of firearms on which the fee is imposed.
In a blistering 14-page dissent, Thomas ripped the Supreme Court and California's 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
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That argument prevailed before the the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, which ruled against the 10-day waiting period in the context of "previous purchasers".
A series of mass shootings including one in which a gunman killed 17 people at a Parkland, Florida high school on February 14 have added to the long-simmering US debate over the availability of firearms.
This report was updated at 10:43 a.m.
The 9th Circuit decision "is emblematic of a larger trend" in which the lower courts fail to protect the Second Amendment to the same extent that they protect other constitutional rights, Thomas said. And, he said, the court had not clarified the standard for reviewing gun regulations for nearly 10 years.
"If this case involved one of the Court's more favored rights", he said, "I sincerely doubt we would have denied certiorari".
Angela Wright Shannon, a former Charlotte Observer editor, wrote in her HuffPost essay published Monday that Thomas should be brought to justice after multiple women accused him of sexual harassment - including herself.