California Sued over One-Gun-a-Month Purchase Limit

Andrea Schry, right, fills out the buyer part of legal forms to buy a handgun as shop worker Missy Morosky fills out the vendors parts after Dukes Sport Shop reopened, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, in New Castle, Pa. under the new conditions specified for gun stores. The store had closed …
AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) filed suit Friday against California over the state’s one-gun-a-month purchase limit for law-abiding citizens.

California has had a one-gun-a-month limit on handgun purchases since 1999, but legislation to expand purchase prohibition to all guns was signed by Governor Gavin Newsom (D) in 2019.

On October 11, 2019, the Sacramento Bee reported Newsom’s signed the Senate Bill 61, bringing long guns under the same one-gun-a-month purchase limit that already governed handgun sales. The expanded gun rationing law is set to take effect July 1, 2021, but the SAF, the San Diego County Gun Owners PAC, North County Shooting Center, Inc., PWGG, L.P., a limited partnership, and six private citizens, are suing in hopes of securing an injunction of the purchase limits.

The lawsuit, Nguyen v. Becerra, was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California.

Plaintiffs name California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and California Department of Justice Bureau of Firearms Director Luis Lopez, claiming the officials “unconstitutionally prohibit—under pain of criminal penalty—the typical, law-abiding adult who is not prohibited from possessing and acquiring firearms—even those known to Defendants as such—from purchasing or receiving more than one new handgun at a time.”

They add, “And as of July of 2021, that prohibition will extend to all semiautomatic centerfire rifles, thus applying to two large categories of constitutionally protected firearms that are unquestionably in common use for lawful purposes.”

Plaintiffs contend limiting the number of guns law-abiding citizens can purchase in a given month represents an “infringement of “law-abiding individuals’…fundamental right to keep and bear arms.”

SAF founder and executive vice president Alan Gottlieb also suggested the law expanding purchase limits is discriminatory because it limits law-abiding citizens to purchasing one gun a month but allows Hollywood movie studios to continue to purchase multiple firearms.

He said, “California’s one-handgun-per-month purchasing restriction is an unconstitutional prohibition that will also apply to all semiautomatic centerfire rifles starting in July. The policy discriminates against private citizens because it does not apply to motion picture, television or video production companies, which we call the ‘Hollywood exemption.’”

Gottlieb added, “The way Becerra and Lopez enforce the law amounts to an infringement on the individual right to keep and bear arms under the Second Amendment, and a violation of the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause.”

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkinsa weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him at You can sign up to get Down Range at



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