When it comes to the issue of gun control, Coloradoans living in the state’s 7th Congressional District have a clear choice come November.
For all intents and purposes, three-term Democratic Rep. Ed Perlmutter and Republican challenger Joe Coors (the former CEO of Coors Brewing) couldn’t be further apart on the issue.
In a recent debate at Rocky Mountain PBS, the two men laid out their respective platforms on gun control.
“There are common-sense approaches that can be taken to avoid some of these mass killings,” explained Perlmutter, referencing the mass shooting that took place at a movie theater in Aurora, which currently falls within the 7th District’s boundaries.
Specifically, Perlmutter believes that there should be restrictions on ammunition purchases.
“So right now if you want to buy a firearm, you have to buy it from a licensed fire arm dealer, face to face. But you can buy ammunition over the Internet, or through mail order,” explained Rep. Perlmutter.
“So one bill I’m co-sponsoring requires that you have to buy ammunition from a licensed firearms dealer. You have to do it face to face.”
Perlmutter supports the notorious ‘Stop Online Ammunition Sales Act,’ which would effectively ban Internet or mail order ammo sales. Proponents of the measure purport that it will prevent sociopaths and criminals from stockpiling ammunition.
He also contends that high-capacity magazines are unnecessary, that they should be outlawed.
“Somebody who wants to defend their person or wants to hunt doesn’t need these 100-round magazines,” Perlmutter said at the debate.
In stark contrast to Perlmutter, Coors believes that “no changes” are necessary to current federal gun laws.
“We need to reinforce the laws that are already on the books a little better,” Coors explained.
“I support what [Colorado] Governor John Hickenlooper said. There are not enough laws that can be created to keep people doing from whatever they want to do. If they want to get them illegally, they’ll get them illegally.”
Coors, like many gun owners, seems to have a fatalistic but pragmatic approach to society. That is to say, bad people will find a way to do bad things. At times, the only thing standing in their way is a law-abiding gun owner.
This race for the 7th District is, in many ways, a referendum on where Republicans and Democrats stand on the issue of gun control. With rare exception, Democrats tend to be the party of gun control and Republicans the party of gun rights (of course, this fact was made explicit in the DNC and RNC party platforms).
As gun owners head to the polls this November, the choice on the issue of gun control is clear in most cases. A vote for a Republican is a vote for gun rights a vote for a Democrat is a vote for gun control, but considering the fact that many of us are not single-issue voters, do you wish there was more of a choice?
That is, do you wish there were more pro-gun Democrats (or pro-gun, independents, libertarians on the ticket)? Also, how much of who you vote for depends on their position with respect to gun control?