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Colorado Senate gives final OK to gun control bills

Published On: Mar 11 2013 12:17:48 PM CDT   Updated On: Mar 12 2013 12:19:21 AM CDT

Final vote of 18-17 included support from two local senators.

DENVER -

A gun control package pushed by Colorado Democrats has cleared the state Senate after two full days of emotional debate.
    
The Senate gave final approval Monday to five bills restricting gun rights, reacting to mass shootings in a Colorado movie theater and a Connecticut elementary school.
    
The bills include a 15-round limit on ammunition magazines, expanded background checks, and a ban on gun ownership for people accused of domestic violence crimes.  The magazine bill passed just before 5:30 p.m. Monday by a final vote of 18-17.
    
The package cleared the Senate after Democrats on Friday abandoned two of the most divisive gun controls - a bill to ban concealed-carry guns on college campuses and another to make gun owners and sellers legally liable for the weapons.

Senate President John Morse of Colorado Springs and Sen. Angela Giron of Pueblo, both Democrats, voted for the magazine bill.  They reflected on the heated emotions and even threats made during the debate.

"I never felt for my safety," said Giron.  "That's why I amended background checks.  It was based on emails from people and meeting with constituents."

"I'm not worried about my own political future," said Morse.  "I've been threatened with recalls before.  If standing up against violence and trying to save lives costs me my political career, that's a very small price to pay."

Morse and Giron didn't seem overly concerned about a possible economic impact from the gun control bills, responding to statements from some business owners who said they'll leave Colorado because of gun control opposition.
    
Most of the bills must head to the House for further debate and approval.

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