Colorado House passes gun-control measures

DENVER Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:41pm EST

People stand on a hillside behind a memorial for victims behind the theater where a gunman opened fire last Friday on moviegoers in Aurora, Colorado July 22, 2012. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

People stand on a hillside behind a memorial for victims behind the theater where a gunman opened fire last Friday on moviegoers in Aurora, Colorado July 22, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Shannon Stapleton

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DENVER (Reuters) - The Democratic-controlled Colorado House of Representatives on Monday formally approved a package of strict gun-control measures, in a state hit by two of the most notorious mass shootings in U.S. history.

All four bills, which had been passed by a voice vote on Friday, were approved by a final, recorded vote after a third reading on Monday, said Dean Toda, a spokesman for the House Democrats. The vote was along party lines, with no Republican supporting the bills, Toda said.

U.S. President Barack Obama and several states have proposed new gun-control measures in the aftermath of the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, on December 14, when a gunman killed 20 small children and six adults at an elementary school.

"We can no longer walk around in our society with these blinders on as if nothing is happening," Representative Rhonda Fields told the House, according to a statement from House Democrats. Fields lost a son to gun violence and her district includes the Aurora movie theater where 12 were killed in a shooting last July.

The Colorado bills, which still must go before the Democratic-controlled Senate, require background checks for all gun purchases - paid for by applicants - a ban on ammunition magazines with more than 15 rounds and a measure to allow colleges in the state to ban concealed weapons on campus.

Governor John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, has said he supported the magazine limits and universal background check measures but was undecided on the college campus ban.

During debate last week, House Republican leader Mark Waller characterized the bills as a "knee-jerk reaction" to the massacres in Connecticut and Aurora.

Besides the Aurora tragedy, Colorado was also the state where, in 1999, two students at Columbine High School in Littleton shot and killed a teacher and 12 students before committing suicide.

(Reporting by Mary Wisniewski and Keith Coffman; Editing by Eric Beech)

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Comments (20)
Jose3 wrote:
This should help to minimize government casualties when Obama and his team roll into Colorado with tanks to squash marijuana legalization.

Feb 18, 2013 9:30pm EST  --  Report as abuse
CountryPride wrote:
And these unconstitutional laws will do nothing to protect innocent people from criminals or crazy people who will not comply with their illegal laws. What part of the right to bear arms shall not be infringed do they not understand? Are they going to start passing laws to limit your first amendment rights next since they seem to so easily be able to violate the second? This is exactly why the second amendment was given to us to give us the right to protect ourselves from the worst criminals of all the tyrant politicians seeking to steal our freedom!

Feb 18, 2013 9:55pm EST  --  Report as abuse
reality-again wrote:
Had these laws been in place years ago, some of the casualties could have been prevented.
States that don’t pass strict gun control laws are playing with fire, literally.

Feb 18, 2013 9:59pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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