NewsCapitol Watch


Presidential hopeful Hickenlooper lays out plan for gun control

Posted at 1:58 PM, May 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-22 15:59:27-04

DENVER – Former Colorado Governor and Democratic presidential candidate John Hickenlooper unveiled his plan today to address gun violence in the US.

The proposal includes raising the age to purchase all firearms to 21 years of age, universal background checks, a standard for gun licensing, limits on magazine capacities, and banning “weapons of war”.

John Hickenlooper
John Hickenlooper (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

In his announcement, Hickenlooper touts changes in Colorado’s gun laws in the wake of the 2012 mass shooting inside the Cinemark Theater in Aurora that claimed 13 lives and wounded 70 more. The shooter, James Holmes, was armed with an AR-15 style rifle, a pump action shotgun and a Glock semi-automatic pistol.

During his tenure as Governor, the Colorado General Assembly approved of prohibiting the sale, transfer, or possession of a “large-capacity magazine” capable of holding more than 15 rounds of ammunition. State law was also changed to require background checks for private and online gun sales.

Here are the details of Hickenlooper’s proposal:

  • Gun owners will obtain a national gun license based on eligibility and a background check, with a renewal process every 5 years. All current gun owners would have 3 years to meet the requirements.
  • Firearms may only be purchased by people 21 years of age and older.  Current law restricts the sale of pistols to anyone under 21.
  • All owners would be required to take safety and storage training.
  • Opposition to allowing concealed-carry reciprocity between states due to differing standards between states.
  • Invest in community-based efforts to reduce gun violence by partnering with local and national groups.
  • Create a nationwide gun storage standard based on Massachusetts law which requires, “It shall be unlawful to store or keep any firearm, rifle or shotgun including, but not limited to, large capacity weapons, or machine gun in any place unless such weapon is secured in a locked container or equipped with a tamper-resistant mechanical lock or other safety device…”  LINK TO MASS.GOV
  • Using systems like predictive analysis to combat gun violence in communities.
  • Fund Centers for Disease Control and Prevention programs to research gun violence.
  • Stronger enforcement of gun trafficking laws by enacting stricter penalties for violators.
  • Folding the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) into the organization of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
  • Provide grants to states to implement enforcement of Extreme Risk Protection orders similar to a recently passed Colorado law. LINK: Gov. Polis signs Extreme Risk Protections Orders into state law
  • Enacting national magazine capacity limits.
  • Push Congress to create a law banning bump stocks and suppressors.
  • Bring back the assault weapons ban (as proposed by California Senator Diane Feinstein)
  • Outlaw the manufacture of 3D printed guns.
  • Expand mental health services in schools and bring Safe 2 Tell nationwide.
  • Remove liability protections for firearms manufacturers and dealers.