The Colorado Independent gives gun control opponents a “C” grade

The Colorado Independent gives gun control opponents a "C" grade

Opinion: Kevin de León’s defenders emerge, but they’re still a minority

A majority of the state Senate’s Democratic-led panel has been united on a proposal that would have made it easier for people to carry concealed guns in Colorado, but that has faced a vociferous opposition effort from the gun lobby.

But even if that group won out, opponents of the legislation would still have their work cut out for them.

A new opinion score card issued by the Colorado Independent gives the gun control side of the debate a “C” grade, even though gun rights supporters have been a minority at every turn.

It’s a remarkable turnaround, with more than half of the five-member, Democratic-dominated state Senate panel voting in favor of the bill, and the remainder of that panel voting against it.

The Independent grades the bill based on a series of key questions, with a “C” or lower representing “consensus” and “B” or higher representing “difference of opinion.”

The scorecard is based on the votes that were taken by senators, rather than by rank and file members, the Independent noted in an editorial on Wednesday after the legislation came up for a final vote after the state Senate was shorthanded due to the Colorado State Fair on Wednesday.

“On gun safety, Republicans and Democrats alike agree: Gun violence is too prevalent,” reads the editorial. “But there is a major difference in the results and the way they are measured.

“It starts with the ballot box.”

The Independent points out that gun rights supporters got a small majority of Republican votes, while gun safety supporters got a majority of Democratic votes. But even more notable, the Independent noted, is that Democrats got more than 1,000 more votes than the Republicans.

As part of the “C” grade, the Independent noted that two major gun safety organizations, the Rocky Mountain Gun Owner Association and the National Rifle Association, issued statements praising the state Senate’s action.

“We applaud the Senate’s decision to approve Senate Bill 14-119, the Concealed Weapons Reciprocity Act,” a spokesperson for the National Rifle Association wrote Tuesday in a statement.

“This law is a common sense measure that helps save lives by prohibiting guns for ineligible categories of people – including law-abiding individuals, those with a domestic violence

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