Wednesday, January 07, 2015

From The Billing Department

I wasn't sure if anything would be filed yet, it being only the first day of the session, but I did find some firearms related bills in the Colorado legislature.

In .pdf form here are the three house bills filed today:

HB15-1009 a bill that repeals the prohibition on normal capacity magazine possession and eliminates the requirement of Colorado magazine makers to mark their magazines.

HB15-1049 a bill that expands Castle Doctrine to businesses and employees thereof.

HB15-1050 a bill that repeals the "universal" background check bill and also eliminates the CBI's fee for running the background check.

Here is a .pdf of what I found in the senate:

SB15-1032 a permitless carry bill. (I hesitate to call it constitutional carry as it only applies to those 21 and over and only concerns concealed handguns.)

All of those house bills have multiple sponsors, each having at least 1 sponsor in the senate. The senate bill has only 1 sponsor so far. The senate bill has been assigned to the senate's judiciary committee. The house bills have all been assigned to the house's state, veterans & military affairs committee, which is traditionally a "kill committee" for whatever party is in charge. The democrats used its senate counterpart to great effect last year. The state veteran and military affairs committee comprises 11 members; Su Ryden (D) (the assistant majority whip) chairs the committee, Joe Salazar (D) is the vice-chair, Mike Foote (D), Susan Lontine (D),  Dianne Primavera (D), Max Tyler (D), Steve Humphrey (R), Patrick Neville (R), Jack Tate (R), Dan Thurlow (R) and Yuelin Willet (R).

Ryden, Salazar, Foote, Primavera and Tyler all voted for the 2013 gunowner control laws. Lontine is new, and there may be some hope as she's a Floridian, but then I found out she grew up in south Florida (which ain't really the south - from Orlando on down there are more yankees than you'd find in Newark, and that has detrimentally altered the culture there) and she was chief of staff for Irene Aquilar, who did vote for all those gunowner control laws in 2013. Still it may be possible to sway her.

Joe Salazar deserves special mention. He's a lawyer who claims to specialize in "employment law, civil rights and constitutional law issues". To quote from his bio page, “I have worked my entire adult life protecting people from abusive government and fighting for the civil rights of all people. Smith, Shellenberger & Salazar, LLC, is committed to fighting for all people, which makes working here worthwhile.

Yet according to Project Vote Smart he voted for every single damn gunowner control bill in 2013. Remember that if you ever are offered services by the law firm he's a partner in - Smith, Shelton, Ragona and Salazar LLC.

So that's 6 fairly anti-gunowner democrats against 5 republicans (who I assume are all pro-gunowner). It does seem like the speaker of the house Hullinghorst sent those bills there to die, but it's not inconceivable to think that at least 1 democrat could be turned to our side (especially if the republicans up their game).

I find it curious that the repeal bills (or any pro-gunowner bill) would start off in the house. I would have thought they'd get them through the senate then send them to the house instead of trying it this way. I don't know enough about the procedures involved to say definitively this is a good or bad move, but I do have some reservations.

There are limits to how many bills a senator or representative may introduce (up to 5) and deadlines for their introduction. By January 28th all the bills in both chambers should be introduced, aside from appropriations bills.

It is only the first day so perhaps over the next week or so more pro-gunowner bills will be introduced, and some idea of the republicans strategy will become apparent.

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