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The Daily Rundown
updated 4/3/2013 12:45:38 PM ET 2013-04-03T16:45:38

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper said he doesn't believe the strict gun rules he helped put into place last month will hurt him in a 2014 re-election bid.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper told Chuck Todd on The Daily Rundown Wednesday that he’d be happy to campaign on universal background checks going forward.

“Certainly, universal background checks are something I’m happy to campaign on,” said Hickenlooper.

The Democratic governor signed stricter gun control legislation into law March 20. The new laws include a provision about gun buyers getting background checks before they make their purchases.

These new provisions are not welcomed state-wide. In fact, many within the state argue that gun control will cost the governor the upcoming election.

But Gov. Hickenlooper is confident he’ll be re-elected and that Colorado voters will warm up to the benefits of universal background checks.

“We couldn’t get Republicans to support the bills, ” he told Todd. “And yet, when I would go out around the state, Republicans everywhere would come up and say, ‘you know, universal background checks, that makes sense…I’ll support that.”

The gubernatorial election is set for November 2014.

Video: Colorado gun law now requires background checks to buy guns

  1. Closed captioning of: Colorado gun law now requires background checks to buy guns

    >> i wanted a time of information where there is access to all kinds of information. it's a human issue. how are we not able to identify someone like this who is deeply disturbed?

    >> that was governor john hick am days after the theater shooting in aurora expressing skepticism whether or not skrikter gun legislation would prevent the shooting. president obama is visiting the state to highlight the state's new gun law which is one of the tougher ones in the nation. good morning, governor. what changed your mind?

    >> not in the sense that they have $20 million a year, but how do we try intercept someone who is unstable and might be a danger to themselves or someone else . we are going after that full force . as i talk to people around the state, i also heard that democrats and republicans and independents, when you talk about back ground checks, almost everyone supported it.

    >> what is it about the universal background thek check that you put in that you think can be replicated?

    >> we had an existing check system from gun shows and gun dealers. we are expanding to everywhere. we went back and got the facts for instance in 2012 . 38 people were trying to buy a gun 1300 assaults and there were 400 people that had a restraining order and they showed up to arrest them.

    >> what do say to the critics and republican senators said he is for expanded background check legislation, but not anything that could keep records because there seems to be a fear with something on file on a background check of who owns guns and if there is a paper trail that that's a violation of personal rights . how did you strike that balance?

    >> we have that same fear in many parts of colorado . what we did was they are going to keep gun control . as long as we focus on that, colorado has a history and we had guns from children. we want to reserve that in a way that keeps people in the urban areas keep them safer.

    >> every one of these incidents, the two in colorado involve young men in their teens and 20s. whatever it is, what is it that government can do on this front? we hear a lot of talk about this, but what is the tangible legislation that is going to put it at the center of the issue.

    >> many states have consistently 99 jully cutoff funding. we are making sure the hotline where people make sure they are neighbors and family members are exhibiting signs of instability, get them in front of a professional and someone trained to intercede. we are setting up five crisis centers all over the state again so that anyone no matter where they are, they are not far away from getting help. we cut things back so drastically that we were just getting the help.

    >> the school security or recommendations that the nra funded study make that you think is a good idea?

    >> i'm sure there good suggestions in there. the notion of making sure that there is an armed camp in every school. do we need armed guards a& presence in every shopping center ?

    >> what is it that you want to see president obama do with congress? he is highlighting what you guys did, but realistically could you have done it without control of your legislature?

    >> we couldn't get republicans to support the bills, idea when i would go around the state, they would say background checks , make sure there is not a centralized feel it's a vital campaign issue. i think they are mistaken and the voters next have a chance to electric at who was supporting background checks and who wasn't, the voters are much more sympathetic to the benefit.

    >>> you going to campaign on this during reelection? are you going to campaign to make it one of the central accomplishments?

    >> we are focused on jobs and have a lot of intense focus on that. it's something i am happy to back up on. for a moment. go down the list and there is over 2500 violent criminals who tried to buy guns who stopped to expand that to make sure that everyone was trying to buy a gun goes through the simple background check and doesn't take forever. costs less than $10. republicans, democrats and colorado holes close to 90%. i could tell there was that support.

    >> 81% of just republicans supporting the background checks in the survey we had out this afternoon. the governor from colorado , thank you for getting up early and we will see you in a couple of hours.

    >> thank you.

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