Colorado state attorneys defended new gun restrictions yesterday against a federal lawsuit to overturn them, saying the laws balance Second Amendment rights with public-safety concerns, the Denver Post reports. Attorney Richard Westfall, representing gun-rights advocates, says the laws are based on emotion rather than data that prove their effectiveness. He argues that the laws violate the Second Amendment right to bear arms.
The laws in question, which took effect July 1, limit the size of ammunition magazines to 15 rounds and expand background checks to firearm sales online and through private sellers. Deputy Attorney General Matthew Grove noted the laws were a response to mass shootings at the Century Aurora 16 theater and Connecticut’s Sandy Hook Elementary School. The first witness was Robert Hewson of the nonprofit Colorado Youth Outdoors, which conducts outdoor programs that include trap shooting and gun safety for parents, mentors and teens. He said the law, which requires background checks on those involved in gun loans that last longer than 72 hours, put the organization’s program in jeopardy.