In an early test of how committed Democrats are to the unpopular gun control legislation that they rammed through last year, today will bring testimony and a possible committee vote on Senate Bill 94, which would repeal the unenforceable requirement for background checks for private party transactions. This will be the first of what is expected to be several repeal attempts aimed at the various gun control bills that Hickenlooper signed into law last year.
In what may be a bad sign for this bill’s viability, SB 94 has been assigned to the so-called “kill committee,” the State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee. This committee, comprised of three Democratic and two Republican lawmakers, is often used as a dead end for legislation that is not favored by the legislature’s left-wing majority. Given the heightened level of partisanship that the Democrats have ushered in since capturing both legislative bodies, we are not holding our breath for a successful outcome.
State Senator George Rivera of Pueblo, who won his seat as a result of the Angela Giron recall, is sponsoring this legislation to repeal a confusing law with countless carve outs for situations such as showing a friend a gun at the owner’s home, letting someone borrow a gun on the range or while hunting, gifts between family members, maintenance, and other scenarios. Even with all of these exceptions, there are still numerous problems that would criminalize common acts such as a man giving his step-son a firearm without using the flawed CBI background check system.
Democratic state Sens. Jessie Ulibarri, Matt Jones, and Irene Aguilar serve on the State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee along with Republican state Sens. Bernie Herpin and Ted Harvey.