Colorado House passes gun-control measures
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.