There are plenty of problems with the magazine ban enacted by the Colorado legislature, so much so that two of the Democrats who spearheaded the effort are now facing recall elections. But two of the worst provisions have now been de-fanged thanks to a lawsuit (Cooke et al. v. Hickenlooper) brought by 55 elected sheriffs against Governor Hickenlooper . . .
The two provisions in question go a long way toward illustrating how little that people who write gun control laws know about how guns actually work.
The first was a provision that any magazine that can be “readily converted” to a “high capacity” magazine is banned from sale, which would have banned every magazine with a removable baseplate. On April 4th, Governor Hickenlooper had this to say about that aspect of the new law:
Well there are certain magazines that are actually…uh…designed and have uh…uh…specific holes and attachments to be…to be extended and those specific magazines…uh…where there’s…uh…a…certain level of design specifically just for extension rather than just cleaning. Uh…but that’s not very many of them.
The second provision mandates that magazines have to be in “continuous possession” of the owner since before the ban was enacted or they are illegal. This would, of course, make range trips with friends very
illegal difficult and prevent gun owners from having their magazines repaired by gunsmiths.
From TVC, it now seems that the Governor’s office has issued “technical guidance” on these issues and basically made these parts of the new law irrelevant. “Readily converted” now only applies to the imaginary magazines that the governor, er described and doesn’t apply to magazines with baseplates. According to the clarification, unless mags have been actually altered to have an extended magazine, they don’t count. As for the “continuous possession” clause, that’s now been defined as ownership (well, “dominion” in lawyer speak). So even if you lend a magazine to someone for a couple of hours — or a couple of years — as long as they have to give it back at some point, you’re both golden.
The plaintiffs in the case had requested an emergency injunction against these two provisions, but since they no longer have any specific impact they’ve dropped their request. The bulk of the case, the part arguing that the law as a whole violates the second amendment, carries on.