Ninth Circuit Ruling Could Hasten Smart Gun Mandate


A case currently before the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit examines “whether states can force firearms manufacturers to incorporate safety devices in their products.”

The case represents a challenge to a California law requiring semiautomatic handgun manufacturers to install two new safeties: one that will not allow the gun to fire if the magazine has been ejected, and a second that indicates a loaded chamber.

The Wall Street Journal reports that a ruling in favor of states’ ability to force additional safeties from gun manufacturers could hasten the implementation of “President Obama’s recent calls for more smart guns.”

The current California law mandates that gun manufacturers construct their semiautomatic handguns in such a way that “they won’t fire a bullet remaining in the chamber if their magazines are detached.” Smart gun supporters are watching and waiting. They believe the opportunity to push smart gun requirements is an opportunity to cut down “on accidental deaths.”

And because Obama has already “pledged grant money to state and local governments to buy [smart guns],” all the pieces are in place for a smart gun mandate that could begin at the state or local level should the Ninth Circuit decide states can dictate how guns are manufactured.

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at