By: Robert Davis
Former Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, retired astronaut Mark Kelly, are helping to launch a new gun control group in Colorado called “Colorado Gun Owners for Safety.”
“This 'group' doesn’t pass the sniff test,” Ryan Flugaur, Director of Federal Affairs for the National Association for Gun Rights, told Gunpowder Magazine.
“The timing says it’s just another shell organization propped up by well-funded out-of-state special interests to give local Democrats cover for pushing the failed gun confiscation bill they so desperately want.”
“These gun owners get it—they know that owning a gun comes with great responsibility,” Giffords tweeted during the group’s inaugural meeting.
The group is made up of sports shooters, hunters, and collectors, who “support commonsense gun laws,” according to the Giffords Law Center website.
Three main goals the group professes it wants to accomplish are: 1) reducing gun violence in Colorado 2) shifting the state’s gun culture to “inspire [people] to fight for safer communities” and, 3) promoting responsible gun ownership.
Pushing Red Flag Confiscation Laws
The group also wants to help pass Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs, also known as “red flag” gun confiscation laws) in Colorado, a measure for which Gov. Jared Polis has publicly voiced support.
“I want to make sure we get this law right; it doesn’t mean we are going to pass it the first day, but I think in the first few weeks or months there should be a discussion …” Polis told FOX 31 Denver during his campaign.
Red flag laws, as Gunpowder Magazine continues to report, make it legal for law enforcement to enter law-abiding citizens’ homes and seize their guns without due warning and without due process. Hundreds of Americans in Florida, Maryland, and Oregon have already had their guns taken. GPM reported earlier this year that police invaded the home of a New Jersey veteran while he was at work and tried to seize his guns based on a conversation a child overheard at school. In Maryland, cops shot a killed a man while trying to serve an ERPO at his home.
Giffords and Kelly met with Democratic lawmakers at the Colorado Capitol on January 22 to drum-up support for the group. Some of the people she met with included Senate President Leroy Garcia (Pueblo), House Majority Leader Alec Garnett (Denver), and Rep. Tom Sullivan (Arapahoe). No Republican legislators were included in any of the meetings.
Critics of the group say they are pushing an agenda that will do away with due process. Others say they are concerned about this group being a voice for gun owners when none of the members are Republicans.
“I don’t believe that this makes Coloradans any safer. So we’re doing away with that due process, and that’s a concern for me,” Republican Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg told CBS Denver.
Democrats introduced an ERPO bill last session, but it failed in a Republican-controlled Senate. This year, with Democrats controlling all three levels of government, it seems more likely that the bill will pass.
An 'Orwellian Policy'
"More gun control in Colorado will be a disaster, just as it's been a monumental failure everywhere it's been tried," Dudley Brown, president of the National Association for Gun Rights, told GPM. "And Coloradans should be particularly alarmed by Giffords' plan to implement red flag confiscation laws. This Orwellian policy empowers cops to show up unannounced on people's doorsteps – and sometimes, knocking those doors down -- and take their guns, without due process.
"Red flag laws are pushed as a way to keep guns out of the 'wrong hands,' but in reality, they give governmental gun grabbers the power to take guns from anyone they don't like," Brown said. "Giffords and her gun group will, without a doubt, face staunch opposition to her unconstitutional and very dangerous anti-gun agenda from liberty-loving Coloradans, especially Rocky Mountain Gun Owners."
Robert Davis is a general assignment reporter for Gunpowder Magazine. You can reach him at RobertDavis0414@gmail.com.