BY FREDA MIKLIN
As expected, on April 28, Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed a packet of four new laws to fight gun violence and forward his previously announced goal of making Colorado one of the ten safest states in the nation. They were:
- HB23-1219 – requiring a three-day waiting period before a gun that is purchased can be obtained;
- SB23-168 – allowing gun violence victims access to the judicial system;
- SB23-169 – increasing the minimum age to purchase firearms to 21;
- SB23-170 – expanding the list of those who can request implementation of the red flag law to medical professionals, educators, and district attorneys.
As he signed the bills, Gov. Polis said, “Today we are taking some important steps to help make Colorado one of the ten safest states, and building upon the ongoing work to make Colorado communities safer. Last year, I was proud to sign a comprehensive public safety plan of action into law to put Colorado on track to becoming one of the ten safest states in the nation, and this legislation today will improve public safety and reduce gun violence. I thank the bill sponsors for bringing this common-sense legislation to my desk.”
The adoption of these four new laws received wide coverage in newspapers, news organizations, and on cable news stations across the country, including The New York Times, USA Today, Washington Examiner, CBS News, The Hill, Axios, National Public Radio, The Guardian, Forbes, CNN, and even the U.K.’s Daily Mail.
They also drew the attention of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO), Colorado’s most vocal pro-gun advocacy group, who announced on that same day that they had, “Filed two lawsuits against Jared Polis and the State of Colorado over HB23-1219, the unconstitutional minimum waiting period requirements surrounding purchasing a firearm, and SB23-169, which denies the constitutionally protected right to purchase, own, and possess a firearm to legal adults between the ages of eighteen and twenty,” adding that, “Members of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners joined as plaintiffs in the lawsuits – challenging the constitutionality of the newly enacted laws, arguing that their right to keep and bear arms are being directly infringed upon by over-reaching politicians in Denver.”
In a press release, Taylor Rhodes, executive director of RMGO said, “For the last few months, I’ve traveled the state promising our members we would sue over these unconstitutional gun control schemes, and today as the governor signs them into law, we are making good on our promises.”
Dudley Brown, president of RMGO, said, ““Gun control extremists think they can play fast and loose with our constitutionally protected freedoms because of their large majorities, but as we have promised, we will not let that happen,” adding, “The idea that an 18-year-old can vote, serve on a jury that could send someone to jail for life, sign contracts, own property, and even be drafted into our nation’s military, but not be able to purchase a basic hunting rifle is asinine.”
Links to the full text of RMGO’s lawsuits can be found on the group’s website, https://rmgo.org.