Governor Newsom Invokes Texas Abortion Law to Take on Guns in California

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California Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks during a news conference at Kingston 11 Cuisine on October 08, 2021 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Following the Supreme Court’s decision last week not to block SB 8, the Texas law that bans abortions after 6 weeks of pregnancy and that also gives private citizens a right to sue anyone who “aids and abets” an abortion, an outraged California governor Gavin Newsom responded by stating he would use that law’s framework to address gun violence. “If the most efficient way to keep these devastating weapons off our streets is to add the threat of private lawsuits, we should do just that,” Newsom said in a statement. “California will use that authority to protect people’s lives,” declared the governor, “where Texas used it to put women in harm’s way.”  We’ll discuss whether Newsom’s plan is legally viable and politically astute.


Khiara Bridges, law professor, UC Berkeley School of Law

Marisa Lagos, politics correspondent, KQED; co-host of KQED's Political Breakdown show