California Senate Passes Comprehensive New Gun Control Legislation

At the center of the debate was the issue of the "bullet button loophole."

— -- The California State Senate passed a comprehensive series of new legislation aimed at curbing gun violence today, according to a press release from Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de León.

The package of bills, which de León called "common sense," is now en route to the Assembly, who will vote on the bills as well. If approved, the package will then go to the governor.

“Public safety is a fundamental responsibility of government and this Legislature will not shirk its responsibility, no matter how difficult the issue,” de León said in the press release. “These proposals take common sense steps to keep weapons and ammunition out of the hands of criminals and empower law enforcement to better serve and protect our communities.”

"This loophole enables a firearm owner to use a bullet or other pointed object to quickly detach and replace a weapon’s ammunition magazine, converting a semi-automatic rifle into an assault weapon. An individual can switch magazines on a gun with a bullet button within seconds, making them especially deadly in a mass shooting situation," State Assemblymember David Chiu of California's 17th District explained in a press release.

The legislation was endorsed by Attorney General Kamala D. Harris, who said in a statement yesterday, "An epidemic of gun violence has cost too many Californians their lives and jeopardized public safety for too long. As California's chief law enforcement officer, I see the urgent need to pass sensible gun safety legislation that aims to keep our streets and communities safe."