May 23, 2024

Colorado has changed a lot in a few decades. It is and has been a state with a great outdoor tradition, including hunting and the use of firearms. Towns like Kremmling see a great part of their revenue every autumn when the huge “Welcome Hunters” banners go up at the front of every motel, restaurant, and gas station. It was also once a state with a strong Second Amendment community, and between the outdoorsmen, activists, and recreational shooters, Colorado was reasonable on Second Amendment issues for quite a long while.

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When I moved to Colorado in 1989, it could be said that the Centennial State was in many ways still South Wyoming. Nowadays, though, it’s rapidly becoming East California, and as another sign of this, Colorado’s leftist-dominated House of Representatives has passed yet another useless “assault weapon” ban.

Colorado’s Democratic-controlled House on Sunday passed a bill that would ban the sale and transfer of semiautomatic firearms, a major step for the legislation after roughly the same bill was swiftly killed by Democrats last year.

The bill, which passed on a 35-27 vote, is now on its way to the Democratic-led state Senate. If it passes there, it could bring Colorado in line with 10 other states — including California, New York and Illinois — that have prohibitions on semiautomatic guns.

But even in a state plagued by some of the nation’s worst mass shootings, such legislation faces headwinds.

Colorado’s political history is purple, shifting blue only recently. The bill’s chances of success in the state Senate are lower than they were in the House, where Democrats have a 46-19 majority and a bigger far-left flank. Gov. Jared Polis, also a Democrat, has indicated his wariness over such a ban.

Governor Polis, while a committed liberal Democrat, is not as far-left in many opinions as much of the Colorado state legislature, which is unfortunately dominated by the Denver-Boulder Axis; this is another sign as to how far left Colorado’s government has drifted.

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The proposed Colorado bill may be read in its entirety here.

The AP report gets one thing wrong; the bill would not ban the “sale and transfer of semiautomatic firearms,” but only semiautomatic firearms dubbed as “assault weapons,” while not touching functionally identical firearms that are not as scary-looking. Yes, that’s ridiculous. And yes, that’s par for the course for “assault weapon” bans. Colorado’s proposed law defines these weapons as:

“ASSAULT WEAPON “, EXCEPT AS PROVIDED IN SUBSECTION2 (2)(b) OF THIS SECTION, MEANS:
(I) A SEMIAUTOMATIC RIFLE THAT HAS THE CAPACITY TO ACCEPT A DETACHABLE MAGAZINE , OR THAT MAY BE READILY MODIFIED TO ACCEPT A DETACHABLE MAGAZINE , AND HAS ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING CHARACTERISTICS:
(A) A PISTOL GRIP OR THUMBHOLE STOCK;
(B) ANY FEATURE CAPABLE OF FUNCTIONING AS A PROTRUDING GRIP THAT CAN BE HELD BY THE NON- TRIGGER HAND;
(C) A FOLDING, TELESCOPING, OR DETACHABLE STOCK THAT IS OTHERWISE FOLDABLE OR ADJUSTABLE IN A MANNER THAT OPERATES TO REDUCE THE LENGTH, SIZE , OR ANY OTHER DIMENSION , OR OTHERWISE ENHANCES THE ABILITY TO CONCEAL THE WEAPON;
(D) A MUZZLE BRAKE;
(E) A FUNCTIONAL GRENADE LAUNCHER OR FLARE LAUNCHER;
(F) A SHROUD ATTACHED TO THE BARREL, OR THAT PARTIALLY OR COMPLETELY ENCIRCLES THE BARREL, ALLOWING THE BEARER TO HOLD THE FIREARM WITH THE NON- TRIGGER HAND WITHOUT BEING BURNED, BUT EXCLUDING A SLIDE THAT ENCLOSES THE BARREL; OR
(G) A THREADED BARREL;

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At least they left off the bayonet lug, so, in Colorado, you may safely keep your bayonet. This is no doubt a serious oversight, as the 1994 federal assault weapons law surely included the bayonet lug as a prohibited item for a reason, most likely due to the scourge in the early ’90s of gang members forming lines, fixing bayonets, and charging innocent citizens.

There are, though, a couple of nonsensical items in this nonsensical bill, such as the “shroud attached to the barrel, or that partially or completely encircles the barrel, allowing the bearer to hold the non-trigger hand without being burned…” This, of course, describes the wood or synthetic forearm that is a standard feature on almost every rifle and shotgun made anywhere, ever. Further, that same section excludes “…a slide that encloses the barrel,” by which I can only guess they are referring to the slide on a pump-action shotgun or rifle – which would not be a semi-auto, but bear in mind the people that draft these bills know nothing about firearms – and those slides never “enclose the barrel,” so this exception is a bit baffling. Maybe they meant to define that shoulder thing that goes up?


See Related: WATCH: Anti-Gun Crusader David Hogg Gets Schooled by Survivor of Chinese Communism 

Ron DeSantis Blasts Biden Admin’s ‘Gun Show Loophole’ Rule—’Will End Up Getting Nixed’

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It’s sad, the state Colorado has descended to. We lived there for 30 years; my wife and I loved the state (at least, Colorado outside the Denver/Boulder area) and still do. It’s a state with beautiful scenery, great hunting and fishing, and in places like the Arkansas Valley and the Western Slope, lots of sane, sensible folks. But the Californiazation of Colorado, sadly, seems to be concluding; this is just one more indicator. This bill may yet die in Colorado’s Senate, or Governor Polis may have a rush of brains to the head and veto it – but Colorado leftists will bring it back every year, sure as shooting.

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