Lawmakers in Colorado, where a gunman burst into a theater last year for a deadly shooting, narrowly passed a handful of gun control bills, signaling a political shift under pressure from the White House.
"Enough is enough. I'm sick and tired of bloodshed," said Democratic Rep. Rhonda Fields, who sponsored a state bill limiting the size of ammunition magazines. Fields, whose son was fatally shot in 2005, represents the district where the theater gunman opened fire.
Vice President Joe Biden called some lawmakers personally before the vote. Democratic Rep. Dominick Moreno said the vice president "emphasized the importance of Colorado's role in shaping national policy around this issue."
While the issue of gun control faces a difficult time in the U.S. Congress amid opposition from most Republicans and even some of President Barack Obama's fellow Democrats, some states are moving ahead with their own measures. New York state earlier this year passed some of the strictest gun control measures in the country.
The Colorado gun control measures go next to the state Senate, where they'll need even more support against opposition from many Republicans.
The state's Democratic-controlled House approved bills on ammunition restrictions; background checks on all gun purchases, including those between private sellers and firearms bought online; a ban on concealed firearms at colleges and stadiums; and a requirement that gun purchasers pay for their own background checks. The ammunition restrictions measure would limit magazines to 15 rounds for firearms, and eight for shotguns.
As one can imagine the Republicans did their best to stop or slow the progress of these measures.
Republicans argued that the proposals restrict the right to bear firearms guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the Constitution, and that they won't prevent mass shootings like the ones in Colorado and December's attack at a Connecticut school.
"This bill will never keep evil people from doing evil things," said Republican Rep. Jerry Sonnenberg.
Republicans also said students should have the right to defend themselves.
It makes sense that the first of the new strict gun control laws, except for New York of course, would come from the states that suffered the most tragic circumstances due to the lack of them.
Personally I feel that this is just the beginning, and that there are going to be many more states instituting their own restrictions in advance of the ones that the federal government is likely to hand down in the very near future.
Of course for every state that sees the writing on the wall and realizes what they must do, there is another that reacts in panic to the idea of new gun restrictions. Like my own state of Alaska for example:
A bill in the Alaska House that would criminalize federal gun regulation is on track to be scheduled for a vote.
HB69, by House Speaker Mike Chenault, was moved from the House Judiciary Committee on Monday.
The bill would make it a felony offense for federal officers to attempt to enforce any new federal laws that attempt to limit gun ownership in Alaska.
The bill has garnered broad support among House Republicans and become a symbol in the fight against federal overreach. But a legislative attorney has said he believes much of the bill is unconstitutional.
Just like a Republican from Alaska to decide to fight what he sees as an attack on the 2nd Amendment with his own unconstitutional bill. What was he suggesting? That our State Troopers arrest federal agents for enforcing federal laws?
And here I thought only those in the South were interested in fomenting a new civil war.
What this dipshit fails to recognize is that the mood in the country has shifted, and if a place like Colorado can implement new laws like this then so can many other states previously believed to be gun friendly. One can only hope that it will not take too many more senseless deaths to convince the rest of the nation, that allowing everybody to own a gun with few restrictions is not the way to keep people safe.
Even in Alaska.
Update: It looks like Missouri refuses to let Alaska out crazy them.
Courtesy of the Business Insider:
A state representative has proposed a bill that would make it a class D felony for any member of the General Assembly to propose legislation "that further restricts an individual's right to bear arms."
The bill was sponsored by Republican Rep. Mike Leara.
So they want to arrest lawmakers for making laws? Wow! Now that is a level of wing-nuttery that may set a new precedent for lunacy.