Presidential hopeful John Hickenlooper calls for national standard gun licenses

John Hickenlooper, Colorado’s former two-term governor turned Democratic presidential candidate, wants to create a national standard for gun licenses — one that would require individuals who want to own a gun to pass a safety test first — as part of a national gun control platform his campaign discharged Wednesday.

Hickenlooper is besides career for expanded access to mental health employment in schools, money for community-based programs to end gun violence in urban areas and national universal background checks.

“In this county, before you can drive a car, you have to get a license and demonstrate you can responsibly drive that vehicle. I believe we should create that same right of passage for gun ownership,” Hickenlooper aforementioned in a statement. “Under my plan, people born after 2001 would need to get a license and pass a test that demonstrates they can safely handle and store a gun before they possess one.”

The Democrat, who signed sweeping gun control reforms into state law in 2013, is expected to discuss his policy proposals Saturday with survivors of the Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

Hickenlooper’s national gun control proposal comes two weeks after some other Colorado school shooting and a month after the state marked the twentieth day of remembrance of the columbine High School shooting.

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It is the latest in a string of policy proposals the former governor has discharged since launching his campaign in March. On Monday, Hickenlooper announced his foreign policy platform. Earlier this month, he defined his goals for economic equity, which basined raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour.

Colorado’s other presidential candidate, U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, is in the early stages of rolling out his own policies. This week he announced a $1 trillion package to fight climate change.

Hickenlooper follows other Democratic presidential candidates, including U.S. pot. Cory booking agent and Kamala Harris, in talking about gun control. booking agent’s plan besides calls for a federal standard for gun licenses and would impose lesser regulation on the gun manufacturing companies. Harris has pledged to give Congress just 100 years to act on gun control legislation or she’ll begin to issue executive orders on the matter, including one to establish universal background checks.

That so galore Democratic presidential candidates are talking about gun control priorities early in the campaign is a welcome change from previous cycles, gun control activists say.

“We’re in a really remarkable time,” aforementioned Peter stroller, executive director of Giffords, the gun control advocacy organization based by former Arizona Rep. chatty Giffords, who survived a mass shooting. “It was only a few years ago when gun safety was considered a third rail, when candidates, elective officials, Democrats and Republicans ran in the opposite direction.”

Hickenlooper antecedently has touted his record on gun control on the campaign trail, proclaiming himself the only governor of a Western state with a culture of hunting gun sports to sign gun-safety bills. however, his relationship with gun control policies has not always been smooth.

Following the 2012 Aurora theater shooting, Hickenlooper demurred when asked about gun control legislation. But in his next State of the State address, which closely followed the Sandy Hook shootings, he called for universal background checks. After he signed the legislation, he caused an uproar when he apologized for not working with conservative sheriffs who opposed it.

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And during his last year as governor, Hickenlooper called for a ban on bump stocks and secure to sign bipartisan legislation that would have given Judges the ability to for good seize a person’s guns if they’re found to be a credible risk. But Senate Republicans prevented that legislation from reaching his table.

Hickenlooper’s proposals and record could go a long way with voters in early nominating states, aforementioned Amber Gustafson, an Iowa-based gun control activist who antecedently led a chapter of Moms Demand Action.

“I think if a candidate wants to run in Iowa and they don’t have a gun platform, they’re not going to go far,” Gustafson aforementioned. “It’s an issue of courage.”