Hickenlooper Hesitates on Mag Cap Ban; Beretta Bailing on Maryland?

 

Colorado Public Radio (cprcheckandbalance.tumblr.com) reports that Governor John Hickenlooper’s starting to waffle on whether or not he’s going to sign the Rocky Mountain State’s recently enacted (by the House) mag cap ban. “We haven’t taken a specific position on that bill yet, but I from time to time have said contradictory things on it.” And continue to do so, apparently. Hickenlooper’s waffling might have something to do with Magpul’s declared intention to bail on Boulder should the Gov. sign the bill (or not sign the bill and let it become law). Not that he’s saying so. “Hickenlooper blamed a lack of hard data for making it difficult to decide on some gun policies, including the appropriate size of ammunition magazines . . .

“It’s a tough issue: I mean, how many lives do you save, and how real is the inconvenience to the people who want to have a larger capacity magazine and feel it’s essential for defending their house?”

Inconvenience? The inconvenient truth is that Hickenlooper’s waking up to the fact that the voters will hand Colorado Democrats their ass at the next election if he pisses on their firearms freedom, driving away one of the state’s more successful small businesses.

Meanwhile, Maryland . . .

Beretta is weighing whether the rifle line, and perhaps the company itself, should stay in a place increasingly hostile toward its products. Its iconic 9mm pistol — carried by every U.S. soldier and scores of police departments — would also be banned with its high capacity, 13-bullet magazine.

“Why expand in a place where the people who built the gun couldn’t buy it?” said Jeffrey Reh, general counsel for Beretta.

Concern that the company will leave, and take its 300 jobs with it, is palpable among state lawmakers who worry it could be collateral damage from Gov. Martin O’Malley’s proposed gun-control bill.

High capacity? the washington.post.com post indicates that the Italian gunmaker doesn’t have the capacity to put up with in-state gun grabbers. As for their threat to leave, Beretta ain’t whistling Dixie—even as they’re contemplating moving in that direction (OK West too but give me some artistic licence).

In testimony this month in Annapolis, Reh, who oversees the plant, warned lawmakers to consider carefully the company’s future. Reh pointed to the last time Maryland ratcheted up gun restrictions in the 1990s: Beretta responded by moving its warehouse operation to Virginia.

“I think they thought we were bluffing” in the 1990s, Reh said. “But Berettas don’t bluff.”

Magpul and Beretta may well prove the truth of the adage attributed to Calvin Coolidge: “the business of America is business.” While civilian disarmament proponents see the firearms industry’s financial muscle and subsequent lobbying power as a bad thing, I don’t. No sir I do not.

[h/t Chuck in IL, imrambi]

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

90 Responses to Hickenlooper Hesitates on Mag Cap Ban; Beretta Bailing on Maryland?

  1. avatarThe Smiling Swordsman says:

    I am proud to own a Beretta!

  2. avatarSD3 says:

    *See* what you guys get for bad-mouthing Beretta all these years ;-(

    • avatarJarhead1982 says:

      Got a 3032 Tomcat for my ex way back when, just before she played the I wanna divorce card, so kept it, and recently it made its way into my pops hands as a tilt barrel is great for older hands. Man you ought to see my pop put em in a 3″ size pattern at 30 ft which for a little mouse gun and an 82 yr old is impressive, great little pistol! Pop has ALWAYS been a great shot!

  3. avatarDisThunder says:

    “I think they thought we were bluffing” in the 1990s, Reh said. “But Berettas don’t bluff.”
    I think that needs to be a bumper sticker.

  4. avatarblahpony says:

    92A1 owner and former MD resident. C’mon Beretta, hop the river. We’ll be glad to have you.

  5. avatarGunner442 says:

    M9….13 round magazine?! All my GI mags were 15 rounders. Is this a .9mm 13 rounder? :)

    • avatarJoshinGA says:

      I have the compact model 92 with (I assume) the smallest standard capacity magazine offered by Beretta for this “iconic series” of pistols, which is 13 rounds. Im guessing this is where the 13 round magazine statement could possibly come from?

    • avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

      Maybe he was referring to the 96A1 which is a 12 +1.

    • avatarLance says:

      All M-9s and the Police version the M-92FS use 15rd mags. A compact version the M-92C was made had a small grip its mag was only 13rds. The author got mixed up.

  6. avatarCasey T says:

    Good for the gun companies ratcheting it up. It’s amazing how they can put so much pressure on politicians. Hopefully, Berretta cranks it up a few more notches and bans police sales in states the screw citizens.

  7. avatarAnonymous says:

    Good.

  8. avatardwb says:

    We need more pressure on O’Malley, the Socialist Republic of MD Senate, and House. if you have not written your delegate, do so immediately. There are some vulnerable delegates who can be swayed. O’Malley is running for prez in 2016 so he needs to understand that voters are going to hand him a pink slip.

    • avatarMark N. says:

      We had Spiro T. Agnew just one step from the WH; why would we electe another Md governor the top post? Once and done, I say.

      “During his fifth year as Vice President, late in the summer of 1973, Agnew was under investigation by the United States Attorney’s office for the District of Maryland, on charges of extortion, tax fraud, bribery, and conspiracy. In October, he was formally charged with having accepted bribes totaling more than $100,000 while holding office as Baltimore County Executive, Governor of Maryland, and Vice President of the United States. On October 10, 1973, Agnew was allowed to plead no contest to a single charge that he had failed to report $29,500 of income received in 1967, with the condition that he resign the office of Vice President. Nixon replaced him by appointing then House Minority Leader Gerald R. Ford to the office of Vice President.

      “Agnew is the only Vice President in United States history to resign because of criminal charges. Ten years after leaving office, in January 1983, Agnew paid the state of Maryland nearly $270,000 as a result of a civil suit that stemmed from the bribery allegations. He is cited as one of the worst Vice Presidents in American history.” (Wiki)

  9. avatarJohn says:

    Bravo!

  10. Magpul and Beretta are welome in Michigan!

  11. avatarJohnnyNRA says:

    Forget Maryland, Beretta, and you too Magpul; just move on down to NE Georgia. FNH; which make the firearms for the military & civilians alike is right across the border in Spartanburg South Carolina, Glocks are made here in Georgia, HK USA factory is based here.

  12. avatarpat says:

    I always said that any high (standard) cap bans are the kiss of death because they are a high profile issue with the pro-gun crowd. Many will pay in 14′ midterms.

  13. avatarMDFalco says:

    I’m an owner of a 92A1. Has worked flawlessly for the year I’ve had it!

    That said, I’ve been very disappointed on their silence regarding the expanding boycott movement. Numerous emails and tweets to them have gone unanswered.

    Come on Beretta! Get in the fight and we’ll support you as well!

  14. avatarJohnnyNRA says:

    Now I know the companies Magpul and Glock have work together before on projects; so it the perfect state. Don’t see why Beretta can’t miss out on the profit, and new tech you guys can produce.

  15. avatarAdam says:

    Lets send a message that we will not tolerate civil disarmerment anywhere. If anyone has email addresses for state legislators considering gun control bills I’d be happy to email them . I’m told Oregon and Washington state are considering tougher gun laws as well. You can email the governor of Colorado here. http://www.colorado.gov/govhdir/requests/opinion.html

    And here’s the email address of every CO state senator

    greg@gregbrophy.net kevin.grantham.senate@state.co.us angela.giron.senate@state.co.us mark.scheffel.senate@state.co.us gail.schwartz.senate@gmail.com ellen.roberts.senate@state.co.us steve.king.senate@state.co.us randy.baumgardner.senate@state.co.us senatorlambert@comcast.net owen.hill.senate@state.co.us john.morse.senate@state.co.us bill.cadman.senate@state.co.us senatorrenfroe@gmail.com john.kefalas.senate@state.co.us kevin@kevinlundberg.com jeanne.nicholson.senate@state.co.us senatormattjones@gmail.com rollie.heath.senate@state.co.us senatorhudak@gmail.com cheri.jahn.senate@state.co.us jessie.ulibarri.senate@state.co.us andy.kerr.senate@state.co.us vicki.marble.senate@state.co.us lotochtrop@aol.com mary.hodge.senate@state.co.us linda.newell.senate@gmail.com david.balmer.senate@state.co.us nancy.todd.senate@state.co.us morgan.carroll.senate@state.co.us ted.harvey.senate@state.co.us mike.johnston.senate@state.co.us lucia.guzman.senate@state.co.us larry.crowder.senate@state.co.us pat.steadman.senate@state.co.us governor.hickenlooper@state.co.us ireneaguilar.md@gmail.com

    • avatardwb says:

      For MD,
      http://www.associatedgunclubs.org/email.html

      MD governor: governor@dnr.state.md.us

      (O’Malley is running for prez in 2016 so even if you are out of state, make sure he knows his candidacy is a non-starter)

      NJ?

    • avatarWA_2A says:

      I can’t speak for Oregon but tougher gun law proposals are getting shut down in Washington.

      For now.

      • avatarLance says:

        Doubt the ban will pass in Oregon Many progun Dems in House Senate said they will not take up the bill.

        • avatarAdam says:

          Even if they are likely to get shot down we should still email them so they won’t even consider it in the future.

          We need to squash these measures so hard that is sends a clear message that if they even talk about gun control it will put their political career in jeopardy. If all we do is block what they propose then they’ll just try again next year and the year after and the year after.

          If we can put this movement down HARD then MAYBE we can start positive movement in the other direction and try to get back some of what we’ve already lost. In order to do that we not only need to twist the arms of legislators but also introduce new people to shooting and show them that guns aren’t the problem and that gun control doesn’t work.

        • avatarLance says:

          I agree 100% Adam and yes email keep pressure and be vigilant!

  16. avatarswampsniper says:

    The mewling little metrosexual crapweasels aren’t qualified to run anything larger than San Francisco bathhouses!

    • avatarTama Paine says:

      With all due respect (in this case, zero), my best buddies in SF who hung out in the bathhouses were ALL gunnies. Some Pink Pistols, but all looked forward to the Cow Palace shows.

      Also, as much as I hate to disabused you of your homerphobia, metrosexuals don’t run bathhouses in SF.

      And finally, the last gun shop in San Francisco operates in Bernal Heights, which is also the ZIP code with the highest concentration nationwide of lesbians owning houses.

  17. avatarDaniel Silverman says:

    I feel we are seeing a change. The companies are beginning to take stand and the politicians are beginning to hear from us the people. Politicians want to stay in office period. They would sell their sole to the devil to make that happen. I think those that sign the contract are starting to want out of it now. If we the armed intelligentsia continue to push and make our voices loud we can beat this.
    It requires us to be involved, and do our part to guide our elected officials.

  18. avatarJOE MATAFOME says:

    I hope they leave and I’ll even buy a Beretta when they move to a gun loving state. Now I just need Kimber to leave their no good COMMIE state, and I won’t buy another Kimber until they do (I already own to many of them anyway).

  19. avatarJim L says:

    Hey Hickenstupid.. STATISTICS aren’t going to save my ass when my house is being invaded by thugs. The very occurrence would equate to a statistical fact and your arrogance on what I can and cannot use to defend my life and that of my families is worth an eternity in jail to defy. Go Eff yourself along with Cuobama, Bloomenschmertz, F*uckstein and the Brady bunch.

  20. avatarBlehtastic says:

    I shot that conceal carry .380 that Beretta’s offering right now. The trigger pull feels like you could read War and Peace before it goes boom, but I’ve been warming up to one of the 92 variants. This may push me over the edge,

    • avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

      My FS has a pretty heavy DA pull but it did smooth up a bit after a few hundred rounds. Still if you’re assailant is more than 10 yards away either take the time to pull the hammer back or aim a bit to the left (right handed shooter). I think it’s a fair trade off since it won’t go bang unless you mean it to.

      Single action is pretty clean and crisp.

  21. avatarSixpack70 says:

    I might go get a 92F so I can practice with my actual service weapon. I am set up for the gun with holsters and such so it would kind of be a no brainer. I also suck at shooting it. I am much better with my other two handguns.

  22. avatarNazgul says:

    Looks like Governor Chickenpooper of Colorado is waving the political flag seeing which way the wind blows, looking for his buddies to give him and his party cover for the next election. Neither Hickenlooper or O’Malley have a clue about the benefits that jobs and taxable revenue bring to a State’s economy. To them, it’s preferable to force people (employees of Magpul and Beretta) to apply for unemployment benefits in a recession, while chipping away at the 2nd Amendment. Money talks and moral BS walks.

    • avataranonymous says:

      > Neither Hickenlooper or O’Malley have a clue about the
      > benefits that jobs and taxable revenue bring to a State’s economy.

      Wrong.

      Before becoming mayor, Hickenlooper owned several restaraunts, including the Wynkoop Brewery, one of the first “brew pubs” in the Denver area. If you’ve seen Steven Seagal’s “Under Siege 2″ (the one on the train), Wynkoop was the restaurant his character was working in at the beginning of the movie.

      Hickenlooper was very instrumental in the “LoDo revival” of the 1990s (along with a new Major League Baseball team at the time). He knows a lot more “about the benefits that jobs and taxable revenue” than most of us here. With a net worth of $5 million to $10 million, he’s one of those 1%ers that we’re support to deify as a Job Creator.

      I despise Bloomberglicker’s anti-gun policies as much as everyone here — even more, becuase I’ll have to live with them — but don’t assume that he is stupid just because you disagree with him about guns.

      • avatarNazgul says:

        Oh really. Maybe he should have thought about that before he backtracked on his earlier statements on gun control. He should have also taken a look at the language of the bill that targeted Magpul before letting it get to committee. Running a business does not equate to making state policy. But I guess Colorado doesn’t need the $85 million in taxable revenue and 600 jobs related to Magpul Industries.

      • avataranonymous says:

        > He should have also taken a look at the language of the
        > bill that targeted Magpul before letting it get to
        > committee.

        You have it ass-backwards. The bill started in the House, then went to the Senate, and then will go to the Governor.

        Magpul was not “targeted”. I sat through all 12 hours of the House Judiciary Committee hearing.

        I think the Donkeyrats had no idea that there was a magazine manufacturer in Colorado when they wrote that bill, much less one that does as much business as Magpul.

      • avataranonymous says:

        > Running a business does not equate to
        > making state policy.

        According to libertarians and Republicans, it does. “Government should be run like a business” is a mantra of the right-wing.

        Or do you think that “community organizer” and “visiting professor of Constitutional law” make one more qualified to be governor or president than, say, a Job Creator ™ like Mitt Romney.

        • avatarNazgul says:

          It is your right to be enamored with Governor Hickenlooper. On any given day, Democrats do not bother me; however, I object to their current 2A policies. That legislation contained language that would allow the CBI to propagate rules on the production of magazines. How does this not target Magpul? The reality is that it does, and they’ll leave Colorado taking the money and jobs with them. You sitting through 12 hours of discussion does not change that or the language contained in the legislation. Given that, please do not assume that others are less knowledgable in government processes than yourself. And don’t assume all blindly follow the GOP. The NRA tried an expensive gamble with Mitt Romney that didn’t pay off. Anyway, I digress. The end result is a magazine ban unless the bill is vetoed. If you support it, that’s your prerogative. Other than that, I’m not interested in splitting hairs.

        • avataranonymous says:

          Dude, seek some professional help.

        • avatarCaligula says:

          Libertarians believe in limited government, not necessarily running government like a business. Get your facts straight.

  23. avatarGov. William J. Le Petomane says:

    I’m sure in their 487 year history this isn’t the first time Beretta has had to pick up and move from where they weren’t wanted to where they were.

  24. avatarTangledThorns says:

    Beretta should start manufacturing their ARX-100s in Virginia or further down south.

  25. avatartjlarson2k says:

    I have PR suggestion for the NRA:

    The Obama Administration’s whole gun confiscation / AWB agenda’s tagline is “if it saves one child’s life” along with a picture of an “assault weapon”.

    Why doesn’t the NRA or someone flip the AWB tagline on it’s head with our own images of actually DGU firearms that were really used to save lives along with pictures of the people saved with our own tagline:

    “We save lives everyday. We are the first responders against tyranny and gun violence. You will not take away our natural rights to defend ourselves, our families, and the good people of this great country.”

    For example:
    (Large image of firearm right next to image of two children)

    “This tool saved THREE lives, myself and my two children on Feb. 13th, 2012 when three armed men broke into our house with the intent to rob us while my husband was serving his country. This tool continues to serve as a tool that allows me to keep MY freedom, liberty, and you will NOT take it away from me.”

    • avatardwb says:

      exactly, and should especially point out that in some gun free cities like detroit, the police are “closed” or on reduced hours to save money.

      • avatartdiinva says:

        Detroit is not gun free. Michigan is a shall issue state. If a Detroit resident wants a permit he can get one. In fact their are a lot of Detroit residents with permits and justifiable homicide count is up substantially in the last few years.

    • avatartjlarson2k says:

      Granted, that’s not really a tagline, got carried away! But you get the point.

      Something along the lines of “The Second Amendment is for life”.

    • avatartjlarson2k says:

      The main thing is we need to keep pointing out that it’s corrupt, inept, and unenforced existing legislature (non-existant NCIS mental health checks that should’ve been in place for YEARS for example) coupled with moronic gun free zones and illogical laws that are putting our children in harm’s way.

    • avatardwb says:

      i totally agree. I like the idea of making it personal stories and a referendum on the politicians inability to solve crime without trampling on civil rights: when the Detroit police “closed” for budget cuts, this left my family vulnerable; The NYC police stop and frisk; etc.

      I see lib comments like “95% of burglaries would end if you give the criminal what they want.” really? if its your 21 month old child they want?

      This is America, Americans are not victims and they do not acquiesce to criminal thugs when they barge through the door. Benjamins Franklin’s quote is apt here, They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety get neither safety nor liberty.

  26. avatarAharon says:

    “Magpul and Beretta may well prove the truth of the adage attributed to Calvin Coolidge: “the business of America is business.”

    That was a long time ago as modern societies measure time. Is the business of America still business or is the business being ignorant, living in denial of reality, and wanting society and government to embrace some progressive dystopia?

  27. avatargloomhound says:

    I think I see a Nano or Storm in my future, perhaps both!

  28. avatarUnapologeticallyAmerican says:

    this has tured into the most influential tool we have against the gun grabbers. Colorado was all set to help lead the way and now look…. I say BRAVO to the manufactures who are taking a stand. Your efforts now WILL NOT be forgotten. I will be buying PMags (as soon as they are in stock). I went and purchased a Magpul stock and grip the other day. We will remember and support you in the future with our hard earned cash not just tomorrow, but for the long term as well.

  29. avatarRandy Drescher says:

    Good going Beretta, they pried James Bonds Jetfire(I believe) out of his unwilling hands, Randy

  30. avatarIn Memphis says:

    If Beretta makes a move to freindly grounds, I will go to the range and try out their 92. If I likes, I buy.

    Has Magpul officially announced they ARE moving or is it still unsure? If they are, where?

    • avatarDavid W. says:

      From what I understand, if the Governor signs the bill, they are moving, if he does not, they are not moving.

      • avatarridemt says:

        Right. Unless I missed it in the last couple of days, the CO Senate still needs to vote on the bill but the party breakdown is 20 D’s vs 15 R’s so it’s not looking promising for Magpul.

  31. avatarBuell301 says:

    As a Marylander I say..why not West Virginia? They’re business friendly, free and our neighbors. They could use the jobs as well. And it would piss off our douchebag governor/boy king.

  32. avatarmichi says:

    The thing about Hickenlooper waffling — I wish it meant good news for us in CO. Unfortunately, Hickenlooper can go ahead and not sign the law, and after 30 days it’ll become law anyways.

    That way he can avoid political scrutiny by not signing it, but still let it go into effect. Only way it wouldn’t is if he vetoed it — and he’s not going to do that.

    The heat is being turned up here with a recall attempt in Durango (though those hardly ever actually work — it’s mostly a gesture) and many (D) senators saying out right that most of the constituent messages they’re getting are against the new laws.

    However, that doesn’t mean they won’t vote for them.

    While I think our goose is already cooked in Colorado, please keep writing and pushing; to Hickenlooper and the state senate.

    We only need 3 to flip in the Senate. I’m guessing that they’ll “Allow” 2 to vote no, so they can save their seats. Like the state House vote, it’ll be close, but probably pass. At that point (the week after this coming week) it’ll be as good as the law of the land forever here, (I’ve never seen a mag limit overturned) — but, really, everyone here has to fight to the end.

    It’s grim, unlikely, but still within the realm of possible. That’s probably one of the most unnerving and stressful places for bills like this to be. :) You can’t resign yourself and begin the process of getting used to the new reality, and you can’t rest assured. :P

  33. avatarCarl says:

    hello person from Maryland here,
    I’d just like to let you all know that the sale of new Beretta pistols have not been legal in Maryland for a while.
    For several years Maryland has had a requirement for integrated safety locks on NEW handguns, and 10 round mag capacity restriction on pistols (currently only 20 rounds for rifles, also the ban only affects sales and use within the state)

    As a result Beretta has not been selling pistols to Maryland residents for several years but it has not stopped them from operating within the state, if SB281 passes I do not believe Beretta will move thier manufacturing.

  34. avatarGyufygy says:

    Damn, another incentive to hunt down one of Beretta’s overpriced but badass locking CX4 carbines.

    Keep rocking the boat!

  35. avatarNickbnumbers says:

    For anyone who has the Governor’s ear:

    We all know that politicians need to save face whenever possible, and it wouldn’t do any good to be seen waffling on a gun rights position where it is obvious that reelection is the primary concern. Just say that saving lives was always the main concern, and after reviewing the data, the Governor believes that more lives will be saved by not restricting the rights of the law-abiding.

    If a journalist asks what data that was, just cite TTAG. Since there are no more investigative journalists in the MSM, the problem will just “go away.”

    You know how we’re always advised to wield our ball point pens and tackle a shooter when he’s swapping out a magazine? The governor realized that bad guys have learned to do the same thing to victims, so he doesn’t want to put Colorado kids at risk.

    Vote freedom. The face you save could be your own.

  36. avatarscottlac says:

    Kentucky sure would welcome the business. Louisville, Elizabethtown, and Bowling Green on the I-65 corridor have plenty of skilled workforce in a place that maintains common sense.

  37. avatarsindaan68 says:

    This is the kind of thing thats WAY more effective than the whole “I wont sell to you anymore”. This is the kind of thing that see’s elected officials looking for new lines of work come the day after elections.

  38. avatarMatt in FL says:

    What difference does him signing it or not make? If he doesn’t sign it, doesn’t it become law eventually anyway? To be clear, my understanding is that he’s not deciding whether to sign it or veto it, but that he’s hesitating between signing and not signing it, correct?

  39. avatarGregolas says:

    Beretta, Magpul, they’ve already pulled the trigger on you. Don’t back down and get out; lock stock and barrel! Alabama will welcome you with open arms. If the libs know major gunmakers will bolt at the first sign of unconstitutional activity. They’ll stop and reverse their attacks on freedom (or the voters will).

  40. avatarMy Name Is Bob says:

    Good! States that abuse our rights should be forced to suffer the consequences.

  41. avatarSGC says:

    EXCELLENT! Finally, a major firearms manufacturer…and by luck the one that supplies our military issue sidearm…being effected by the gun grabbers. Come south my friends, come south…

  42. avatarCaligula says:

    Beretta is welcome in North Carolina. We just got rid of one of our worst governors in the history of the state, Bev Purdue. We’re open for business and need the jobs.

    • avatarBob Wall says:

      Interesting that Hickenlooper cares more about the rights of a smaller minority to do “on the bed,” than the rights of a majority of Coloradans to keep beside or under the bed. If it’s “their right” (and I think it is) to live their lives unfettered by State policy, why shouldn’t the same policy of “live and let live” apply to gun owners. I don’t think shouting “I’m gay!” as opposed to “I’ve got a gun!” ever deterred a burglar.

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