Colorado gun legislation misses the mark |

Colorado gun legislation misses the mark

Lawmakers, officials weigh in on heated topic

Patrick Kelly

On April 13, the House State Affairs Committee shot down six bills aimed at reversing restrictive gun legislation passed in 2013.

The rejected bills included propositions targeted at annulling background checks for private gun transfers, restrictions on magazine capacity and limitations on where firearms may be carried.

Colorado House District 57 Rep. Bob Rankin, R-Carbondale, said he is not surprised by the committees' decisions.

"It's generally known as the kill committee," he said. "The committee where they send bills to die."

Rankin is not on the State Affairs Committee and did not have an opportunity to vote on the legislation. However, he said he supports efforts to repeal legislation limiting the Second Amendment rights of his constituents.

"I represent rural Colorado and we, by a big majority, believe in the Second Amendment — a right to bear arms," he said. "We don't believe that any restriction is necessary or constitutional."

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But for gun-control advocates, the committees' decisions were a major victory.

"We owe it not only to our own Colorado kids but also to the victims of gun violence and families everywhere to find ways to make our schools safe and free from gun violence," said Erin DaCosta volunteer leader with the Colorado chapter of Moms Demand Action, in a press release from Everytown for Gun Safety.

John Kinkaid, Moffat County Commission chairman, said he thinks unwillingness to compromise on the issue leaves all of Colorado at a loss.

"I think we all lose because we couldn't come up with something that both sides could live with," he said.

Reach Patrick Kelly at 970-875-1795 or Follow him on Twitter @M_PKelly.

Senate Bill 32/House Bill 1152 — Allowing a law-abiding person to cary a concealed handgun without a permit. Defeated 7-4.

Senate Bill 86 — repealing the requirement for background checks on private firearms transfers. Defeated 7-4.

Senate Bill 175 — repealing ban on magazines capable of holding more than fifteen rounds. Defeated 6-5.

House Bill 1138 — allowing an individual to forgo a criminal background check if they have a valid Colorado concealed handgun permit. Defeated 6-5.

House Bill 1168 — concerning permitting the carry of concealed handguns on public elementary secondary school properties. Defeated 7-4.