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by on February 13, 2013

CBS Denver

DENVER (AP) – Colorado Democrats gave initial approval to expanding background checks on firearm purchases Tuesday, as well as setting new ammunition limits, starting an intense debate over stricter gun laws that drew hundreds to the state Capitol.

The bills are the latest responses to the mass shootings at an Aurora movie theater and a Connecticut elementary school, tragedies that have heightened the national discussion on gun control and mental illness.

A House committee voted Tuesday 7-4 on two bills, one to require background checks on private gun sales and online firearm purchases, and another a limit on high-capacity magazines. Republicans opposed the measures.

The votes came after more than eight hours of testimony from those who say the measures are needed to curb gun violence, and people concerned that their right to bear arms will be restricted.

It’s the beginning of a long fight on a package of Democratic…

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