From the Independence Institute, via Dave Workman, late yesterday afternoon:
This morning in Denver, 54 Colorado sheriffs and other plaintiffs including disabled gun owners,will file a federal civil rights lawsuit against the Centennial State’s new laws affecting sales and temporary transfer of firearms, and placing limits on magazine capacity.
Joining the Sheriffs in the civil rights lawsuit are disabled individuals, Outdoor Buddies (a charitable organization for disabled individuals), licensed firearms dealers, Magpul, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the Colorado State Shooting Association, the Colorado Outfitters Association, Colorado Youth Outdoors, and Women for Concealed Carry, according to a press release from the Independence Institute.A suit of this nature with 54 of Colorado's 62 Sheriffs joining in a suit against unconstitutional laws is pretty unprecedented.
A full video will be uploaded to http://www.youtube.com/user/davekopel shortly after the conclusion of the press conference. Again from the Independence Institute presser:
Sheriffs are coming from as far away as the Western Slope to participate in the press conference. Also at the press conference will be disabled citizens in wheelchairs, and representatives of Women for Concealed Carry.
After approximately 15 minutes of prepared statements by the Plaintiffs, the Plaintiffs, as well as Sheriffs' attorney David Kopel, will take questions from the media. There will be photo and video opportunities. Plaintiffs will be available for interviews.We will also have the video up as quickly as we can on DRTV. From the presser:
According to the Independence Institute press release, “The suit points out that House Bill 1224 outlaws the majority of firearms magazines, which are an essential component for a functional firearm. The bill directly outlaws magazines of more than 15 rounds. The bill indirectly outlaws many smaller magazines with its vague language about "designed to be readily converted." This appears to outlaw all handgun and rifle box magazines with removable floor plates, and all rifle tube magazines with removable end caps.
“This violates the Supreme Court's rule in District of Columbia v. Heller against prohibiting arms which are ‘typically possessed by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes’,” the release asserts.
“Another problem with the magazine ban is the requirement for ‘continuous possession’ of grandfathered magazines,” the release explains. “This makes it illegal for a wife to let her husband use her magazine for self-defense, or to borrow her magazine and take it to a target range.”The laws are scheduled to take effect 1 July. At the NRA Convention and through my private contacts, I am hearing that the word used to describe the Colorado hunting and shooting event boycott is "disaster." Outfitters have repetaedly told me of cancellations for their whole autumn season this year, and we anticipate the 2014 hunt to be much, much worse if these laws stand, A hunter or shooter would be crazy to expose themselves to the kinds of risks outlined above.
Once again...DO NOT VISIT OCCUPIED COLORADO IF YOU ARE A GUN OWNER WHO PLANS TO CARRY CONCEALED, A HUNTER OR A SPORT SHOOTER! THE RISKS ARE TOO GREAT!
MagPul is out, Hi-Viz is out, all my production has been pulled from the state, and I have heard from dozens of other business owners who are relocating rather than put money into a slave state. The recall efforts against these antigun shills are gaining traction, especially against Senate President John Morse of conservative Colorado Springs, who famously said on the Rachel Maddow MSNBC show that he instructed Senate Democrats in the Colorado Legislature to ignore the voices of their constituents.
UPDATE: Video now up on DOWN RANGE TV! It's a great video and it helps explain the ludicrous unconstitutional nature of these laws.
UPDATE: NSSF Joins Colorado Sheriffs Lawsuit:
“In addition to Constitutional infringements and unenforceable requirements regarding magazine capacity, as the sheriffs have pointed out, we believe it will be impossible for citizens to comply with mandated firearms ‘transfers’ through federally licensed retailers,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF Senior Vice President and General Counsel. “Colorado’s federally-licensed firearms retailers are being asked to process these transfers as if they were selling from their own inventory and to monitor both seller and buyer through a state-administered check process that can take hours or even days. They will not be able to recoup the actual cost of providing the service, which is capped at $10, but they will be liable for paperwork errors and subject to license revocation. Not surprisingly, we expect few, if any licensed retailers will step forward to provide this service.”
Duane Liptak, Director of Product Management and Marketing for Magpul Industries, said that these gun control laws do nothing other than restrict the ability of law abiding citizens to defend themselves and Magpul is committed to invalidating these infringements:
“Colorado’s recently passed gun control laws are a direct assault on the constitutional rights of the responsible people who live in and visit this great state. These laws will do nothing to enhance public safety and only place unreasonable limitations on the ability of law abiding citizens to defend themselves. While Magpul is currently in the process of moving its operations out of Colorado, we will not turn our back on our native state. Extreme gun control interests have forced the passage of these unconstitutional laws in Colorado, and as a company, we are resolved to restore those rights to the people.”
And props to the Sheriffs, including my friend Larimer Country Sheriff Justin Smith, who told it like it is at the press conference. Said El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa, "We each took an oath. The line in the sand has been drawn, and we will stand united."
Republican Attorney General John Suthers, who's responsible for defending the state in the lawsuit, issued a statement Friday giving guidance to law enforcement on how the new magazine limit should be enforced. He said magazine features "must be judged objectively" and that magazines that hold 15 rounds or fewer can't be defined as "large capacity" simply because it [sic] can be modified to include more.
At issue is a provision of the Bloomberg bill that specified not only magazines with a capacity of greater than 15 rounds were illegal, but that ANY magazine that could be converted to hold greater than 15 rounds was also illegal after the 1 July deadline. That means any magazine with a replaceable baseplate, pretty much all semiauto pistol magazines except the 1911. The Attorney General's non-binding "guidance" goes directly against the wording of the bill...
The bill prohibits the sale, transfer or possession of an ammunition feeding device that is capable of accepting, or can readily be converted to accept, more than 15 rounds...
...and the specific intent of the bill as stated by Rep. Rhonda Fields, the former criminal (larceny, shoplifting, writing bad checks) tapped by the Bloomberg organization to introduce the magazine capacity bill and the Governor himself, who stated upon signing the bill that the bill meant what it said.
Hickenlooper immediately began walking back his support of the bills with a rare "signing statement" issued after he signed the bill, which read in part:
In considering the language of HB13-1224, we have consulted with the Office of the Attorney General and we concur with its advice that the large-capacity magazine ban should be construed narrowly to ensure compliance with the requirements of the Second Amendment and the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment. We have signed HB13-1224 into law based on the understanding that it will be interpreted and applied narrowly and consistently with these important constitutional provisions.
Translated from cowering Bloomberg shill-ese into English, it means the Governor and the Colorado Legislature know the laws are unconstitutional, but they're hoping that a non-legally binding "narrow interpretation," e.g., the AG asserting the law actually doesn't mean what it says...nudge, nudge, wink, wink, say no more, will pass constitutional muster. The Colorado Sheriffs addressed that issue up front in today's news conference. Under the Colorado Constitution, laws do indeed mean what they say, and non-binding "guidance" is, well, non-binding.