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NRA loses appeal of California firearm fee

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The National Rifle Association failed to persuade a federal appeals court to overturn a California law requiring that $5 of a $19 fee imposed on firearms transfers be used to fund enforcement efforts against illegal firearm purchases.

In a 3-0 decision on Thursday, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said the law advanced California’s interest in disarming people who are forbidden from possessing guns and rifles, while imposing only a “minimal” burden on core constitutional rights under the Second Amendment.

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California’s prohibition covers people convicted of felonies or violent misdemeanors, people subject to domestic violence restraining orders, and the mentally ill.

“The government has demonstrated an important public safety interest in this statutory scheme, and there is a reasonable fit between the government’s interest and the means it has chosen to achieve those ends,” Chief Judge Sidney Thomas wrote.

Thursday’s decision is a defeat for the NRA, the California Rifle and Pistol Association Foundation and four other plaintiffs.

They argued that by taxing legal firearm transfers to combat wrongful firearm possession, California imposed an “unconstitutional tax on a fundamental right.”

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According to court papers, the remaining $14 of each fee goes toward running background checks and processing paperwork.

An NRA spokeswoman had no immediate comment. A lawyer who argued its appeal did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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The office of California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, which defended the state law, had no immediate comment.

Thursday’s decision upheld a March 2015 ruling by Chief Judge Lawrence O’Neill of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California. He sits in Fresno.

The case is Bauer et al v. Becerra et al, 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, No. 15-15428.

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(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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‘Go look at President Trump’s Twitter’: Portland right-wing rally organizer claims ‘mission success’

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The organizer of a far-right rally in Portland, Oregon claimed the event was a "success" after President Donald Trump attacked Portlandiers protesting the group.

"A confluence of protesters on opposite ends of the ideological spectrum merged on Portland’s waterfront Saturday in a tense but relatively uneventful face-off that brought national attention, including a tweet in the hours before the protest by President Trump decrying the city’s signature anti-fascist movement," the Oregonian reported Saturday.

When a similar right-wing rally in Charlottesville, Virginia killed Heather Heyer, Trump argued there were "fine people" on both sides of the "Unite the Right" rally.

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Why was Jeffrey Epstein buying size 5 women’s panties — while in jail?

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The Miami Herald has another bombshell report on Jeffrey Epstein, who died in a Manhattan jail while waiting to stand trial on federal sex crimes charges.

"A decade ago, during a brief stint in Palm Beach County Jail, convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein made an odd purchase at the facility’s store: two pairs of small women’s panties, size 5," the Herald reported Saturday night.

The newspaper noted, "the panties raise questions about why a childless male inmate, accused of sexually abusing girls as young as 14, would be allowed to buy female undergarments so small that they wouldn’t fit an average-sized adult woman."

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White nationalist Republican ridiculed after only 2 people show up for his town hall meeting

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Embattled Rep. Steve King (R-IA) suffered further humiliation on Saturday when only two people showed up for his town hall meeting with Iowa constituents.

King, who was stripped of all committee assignments for his white nationalism, was been an embarrassment for Republicans with his constant racism and misogyny.

A photo of the town hall meeting was posted on Twitter by Reuters photo editor Corinne Perkins.

https://twitter.com/corinne_perkins/status/1162806565109473280

Rep. King was quickly mocked in the comments.

Here's some of what people were saying:

https://twitter.com/sedespres/status/1162811223186006018

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