Colorado Courage Campaign and Columbine Father Urge U.S. Congress, Sen. Udall to Close Gun Show Loophole
DENVER, April 19 /PRNewswire/ — With 87 percent of Americans supporting criminal background checks on gun purchasers at gun shows* – Tom Mauser, father of Columbine High School massacre victim Daniel Mauser – wonders why the U.S. Congress and Colorado Senator Mark Udall have failed to support and pass federal legislation that would finally close the “gun show loophole.”
Currently, it is up to each state to require criminal background checks and formal recordkeeping for gun purchases at gun shows. A decade ago, more than 70 percent of Coloradoans voted for a referendum that required such scrutiny, but many other states – including those that border Colorado – have not enacted such legislation, keeping our citizens needlessly at risk.
The shooters at Columbine obtained three of their guns through a private seller at a gun show with no background checks, which directly contributed to the senseless killing of 13 and wounding of another 21. Yet, 11 years after the rampage, our citizens remain unsafe.
On the eve of the 11th anniversary of the tragedy, Mauser’s letter to Senator Udall was placed in the Denver Post and Boulder Daily Camera on Monday asking Colorado Sen. Mark Udall to join Sen. Michael Bennett in sponsoring S. 843, proposed legislation that would eliminate the loophole nationally.
“It’s time for Sen. Udall to stand with Colorado citizens who voted overwhelmingly to close this loophole in our state,” Mauser said. “He voted for nearly identical legislation as a U.S. House member in 1999. With Senator Bennet’s support, we have the momentum to finally pass common sense legislation to keep guns out of the wrong hands. It’s shameful that after all these years, our country still hasn’t done anything to close this loophole.”
Key policymakers, including Sen. John McCain and former Colorado Governor Bill Owens, have supported legislation preventing gun show purchases without a background check. Current legislation is receiving bipartisan support, but is opposed by National Rifle Association leadership – despite the fact that two out of three of its members support criminal background checks at gun shows.**
*2008 bi-partisan poll conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research and the Tarrance Group.
**2009 poll by Republican pollster Frank Luntz.
SOURCE Colorado Courage Campaign