After more than two years, Democrats in the state of California are finally having to admit that they totally botched the registration process for so-called “assault weapons” — and the guy who was in charge of it all is now President Joe Biden’s secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS).
According to the Associated Press, the Golden State recently settled a lawsuit filed by a gun rights group and paid the organization more than $151,000 in attorneys’ fees as a result of the crushing defeat, in addition to promising not to prosecute any gun owners who failed to register their weapons by a 2018 deadline and provide a new registration process that will actually work.
The original registration process for AR-15s and other weapons that have so-called “bullet buttons” opened in 2016, but technical problems prevented gun owners from using the online system — and by the deadline in 2018, only 3% had managed to register their firearms, according to the Washington Free Beacon.
As part of the settlement, no gun owners will be prosecuted for at least seven months, and a paper registration will be provided for those who might not be able to access the online system.
More “than we asked for”
In a statement, Firearms Policy Coalition president Brandon Combs said the settlement was a victory for the group and exceeded their expectations.
“After we got into discovery and saw just how bad the state handled the situation, we actually got more out of this settlement than we asked for in the case,” he told the Free Beacon.
The state seemed satisfied with the settlement, too. According to the AP, a spokesperson for the California Department of Justice said it “believes the proposed settlement is in the best interest of the people of California, and will ensure that lawfully owned assault weapons are registered with the Bureau of Firearms.”
Of course, it just provides further evidence of how restricted gun owners are in California that a gun rights group is ecstatic about a fair process to give the state information about who owns guns — a move that groups like the National Rifle Association (NRA) argue is too restrictive and could be a slippery slope to eventual weapons confiscation.
More action pending
However, the group does have another lawsuit pending, Miller v. Becerra, that seeks to strike down the ban that prompted the registration, as the Free Beacon notes. Combs, for his part, said he realizes that only striking down the ban on so-called assault weapons will truly protect gun owners in the state.
“This is a human liberty issue,” he said, according to the Free Beacon. “And if you are not able to arm yourself with effective weapons, then you don’t have full access to your human right of self defense.”
Possibly the most disturbing part of the whole debacle is that then-California Attorney General Xavier Becerra proved his incompetence with this botched registration process, but yet was promoted by the Biden administration to a national role.
California has been poorly run for decades, and yet we have a vice president, House speaker, and now even Cabinet officials who were part of building a failing bureaucracy. And now, they seem to be doing their best to export their shortcomings to the federal government for the whole country to live with.