Bill to ban long gun ‘open carry’ goes to Brown

A bill to extend the state’s ban on “open carry” of handguns to include long guns as well has been sent to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk.

AB 1527 by Assemblyman Anthony Portantino, D-La Canada Flintridge, passed an Assembly concurrence vote 45-30 after about an hour of debate Wednesday, according to the lawmaker’s office. The state Senate had voted 23-15 Monday to pass the bill; the Assembly had approved an earlier version of it May 3 on a 44-29 vote.

shotgunPortantino issued a statement saying the law “will safeguard families confronted by rifle-toting gun enthusiasts and will shield law enforcement personnel from tense situations where they don’t know if the rifle is loaded or unloaded.”

Last year’s AB 144, which took effect Jan. 1, made it illegal to carry an unloaded handgun in any public place or street; law enforcement personnel are exempt as are hunters and others carrying unloaded weapons under specified licensed circumstances. Supporters had said open-carry practices should be banned for the sake of public safety, and to protect the safety and conserve the resources of police officers checking to ensure the guns aren’t loaded, in accordance with state law.

Gun-rights activists have seized upon open-carry laws in states across the nation as a means of expressing their political beliefs, acting individually, or gathering to carry their weapons both as an exercise of constitutional rights and for self-protection. They say they’re both protecting their rights under current law as well as advocating for changes so that more people can get permits to carry concealed weapons, something that’s sharply limited under current law.

Some activists reacted to AB 144’s implementation by organizing public events in which they carried unloaded shotguns or rifles rather than handguns. So Portantino introduced AB 1527 to prohibit this as well; the bill includes exemptions to allow safe transportation, lawful hunting and use by law enforcement officials.

AB 1527 is supported by groups including the California Police Chiefs Association, the Peace Officer Research Association of California and the California chapters of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence; it’s opposed by groups including the California Rifle & Pistol Association and the National Rifle Association.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Elwood

    If Jerry signs it, that will definitely make everything all better!

  • Legalgrounds

    Glad to see they’re closing this loop hole.

  • JohnW

    The law doesn’t cover bows and grenade-tipped arrows. So, get ready for a bunch of Rambo sightings at Starbucks.

  • Elwood

    Nothing knocks Bambi on his ass like a grenade-tipped arrow!

  • JAFO

    I certainly support the right of law-abiding Americans to own firearms. But, it must be said that those who insist on displaying their weapons publicly, especially men, are compensating for something. Additionally, just imagine the entirely logical response of police officers responding to callers’ reports of “a man (or woman) with a gun.” Someone in such circumstances is going to get killed. It’s only a matter of time.

  • JohnW

    I think that’s what Paul Ryan, a bow and arrow hunting enthusiast, uses on the catfish when they don’t cooperate with the “noodling” method.

  • GMiller

    Somehow California survived for centuries without an open carry ban. Interesting that gun violence rates nationwide have been dropping for years, even as gun ownership is soaring, thanks to the gun salesman of the year for the last four years, Barack Hussein Obama.

    Allowing the CA hard-left legislature to continually restrict our 2nd Amendment rights will have tragic consequences long-term.

  • Elwood

    @JAFO #5

    ” Additionally, just imagine the entirely logical response of police officers responding to callers’ reports of “a man (or woman) with a gun.” Someone in such circumstances is going to get killed. It’s only a matter of time.”


    Give me one example anywhere where the police have been called out for an open carry event. And you say how many were killed?

    You should be ashamed of yourself.

  • Michael

    Welcome to the fascist state of California. For all of the anti-Second Amendment folks, there will be a karmic payback. It’s going to be quite ironic don’t you think when California (16 billion deficit already) crumbles into financial chaos and you can’t defend yourself from the zombie hoards….THAT will be sweet justice when it finally dawns on you that you’ve been had.

  • JAFO

    @Elwood #8

    You miss my point. After you’re back on your meds, take some time to do a little research. Ask a few police officers about their mindset when they respond to dispatch calls describing “a man (woman) with a gun.” They can not and will not casually approach the subject on the chance the person in question is simply an “open-carry” advocate. They will instead more likely approach the person with their own weapons drawn and forcefully demand that the gun owner immedately drop his/her weapon, legal or not. Their training does not permit them to assume that the gun owner is just an enthusiastic second amendment proponent. Such casual approaches to those publicly displaying firearms could result in an officer’s or gun owner’s death. I think you know that I wasn’t suggesting that such a fate had befallen an officer or “open-carry” advocate, only that unanticipated circumstances could some day result in such an tragic incident. Of course, the chances of such an incident are greatly reduced if weapons aren’t publicly displayed. Now, time for your next dose followed by a little nap.

  • JohnW

    Re: #7

    “…even as gun ownership is soaring, thanks to the gun salesman of the year for the last four years, Barack Hussein Obama…”

    And what actions or proposals by Obama precipitated this surge in demand for guns and ammo, to the point that stores actually ran out of ammo for a while?

    After all, George H.W. Bush resigned his NRA membership due to their extremism. Wouldn’t you expect that to get the gun crowd fired up. And people didn’t run out and buy guns during the last Democratic administration, even though Clinton was hardly a gun enthusiast and had picked a VP who was a proponent of greater gun control — so much so that the NRA targeted him in his home state of Tennessee in 2000, costing him the election.

    So, what was different about Obama that triggered this “gun salesman of the year” thing? Gee, I wonder. Whatever could it be?

  • Elwood

    @ JAFO #10

    You are hallucinatory. I doubt if you could even recognize a cop, let alone imply that you’ve asked a few police officers about anything.

    Your post is total bull****.

    And the bit about the meds? I laughed until I got tears all over my keyboard the first time I heard that one. You are to be commended for your originality.

  • Truthclubber

    @11 —

    “Whatever could it be?”

    It’s as clear as black and white to me… 😉

  • Brad

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