UPDATE: A reader reports the same openly false statements about HB13-1229 were sent in emails from numerous other Republican legislators, including Rep. Ray Scott and Rep. Kevin Priola. We're working to confirm–bad form, Republicans.
Are you curious why armies of demonstrators are converging on the state Capitol, in a state of panic that Democrats in the Colorado General Assembly are about to enact draconian gun control schemes?
Simple: that's what Republicans are telling them. Like state Sen. Mark Scheffel of Douglas County. Check out this alert from Sen. Scheffel to his constituents, and ask yourself how this kind of mendacity can possibly be justified:
As many of you know, it has been anticipated that Second Amendment issues would dominate the legislature this session and I wanted to update you on recent and upcoming events at the Capitol…
As recently reported, the Democratic majority in the legislature has rolled out an anti-gun initiative that is made up of eight bills. The four upcoming bills are as follows: HB 13-1224, sponsored by state Representative Rhonda Fields (D-42), would ban magazines that hold more than ten rounds; HB13-1226, sponsored by state Representative Clare Levy (D-13), would repeal the current right to carry a concealed firearm for self-defense on a college or university campus; HB13-1228, sponsored by state Representative Lois Court (D-6), would require law-abiding citizens to pay a fee (or gun tax) for a background check when purchasing a firearm; HB13-1229, sponsored by state Representatives Rhonda Fields and Beth McCann (D-8), would prohibit and criminalize the private transfer of firearms. [Pols emphasis]
Sen. Scheffel seems talking about the same HB13-1229 that passed the House Judiciary Committee yesterday on a party-line vote, insofar as that's the bill number he used. But HB13-1229 does not, as anyone who has read even one news story about it knows, "prohibit and criminalize the private transfer of firearms." HB13-1229 requires a background check be performed before a gun is sold or transferred. It does not "prohibit" or "criminalize" the transfer of a firearm, unless the recipient does not pass or fails to complete a background check.
But that's not what Sen. Scheffel told his constituents. Scheffel didn't even say Democrats were effectively prohibiting, or note that such a prohibition would only be in the case of someone failing or not undergoing a Colorado Bureau of Investigations background check. You see, background checks are popular.
Sen. Scheffel told his constituents that Democrats are trying to literally criminalize private gun sales.
Listening to some of the unhinged debate taking place in the House Judiciary Committee yesterday, it's reasonable to wonder how these presumably honest and decent citizens got such crazy misinformed ideas about the actual proposals on reducing gun violence being debated.
Seeing this inexcusably deceptive message from a sitting Colorado senator, we think we've figured it out.