In a Facebook post last week, State Sen. Laura Woods referred to Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson and his running mate as “gun grabbers.”
A Republican from Arvada/Westminster, Woods has made no secret of her hard stance against all gun safety laws, including her opposition to Colorado billls requiring mandatory criminal background checks on people purchasing guns.
She also opposes a Colorado law limiting the number of bullets a person can load into a gun at one time. Woods wants gun to be allowed to hold, for example, 100 bullets if the shooter wanted.
And on Woods’ website, she emphasizes her belief that all people should be allowed to openly carry a gun in public, without concealing it and without obtaining a permit. Woods’ website explains that she favors passing bills enacting this extreme pro-gun position, called “constitutional carry” legislation.
But the strange part is, Libertarian Johnson, whom Woods called a gun grabber, seems to be just about as far from a “gun grabber” as you could possibly imagine, having once told Slate Magazine, “I don’t believe there should be any restrictions when it comes to firearms. None.”
Johnson recently told USA TODAY he supports gun sales to suspected terrorists who can’t fly on airplanes because they’re on America’s terrorist watch list. And Johnson opposes a ban on automatic weapons.
Yet, Woods thinks Johnson is a gun grabber?
That’s a term used to describe someone who is believed to favor government confiscation of guns from ordinary citizens.
What could Johnson possibly say that would make him sufficiently opposed to basic gun safety to meet Woods’ standards for gun craziness?
Woods wants total-freedom-to-own-and-buy-guns, but so does Johnson, as you’d expect from a Libertarian, who sees these safety measures as an intrusion on privacy. Woods doesn’t return my calls, so I’ll leave it to another reporter to find out what she’s thinking.
Meanwhile, Woods’ views on guns will likely not fly so well in her Arvada/Westminster swing district, where she faces a challenge from Democrat Laura Zenzinger.
An overwhelming 80 percent of Coloradans support background checks for all gun purchases, and 60 percent support limits on the number of bullets allowed in a gun’s bullet holder, called a magazine, according to a Denver Post poll.
“I’m really disappointed in you, Senator. Promoting the lie that Gary Johnson is a gun grabber,” commented Stacy Petty, a former conservative talk-radio host in response to Woods’ Facebook post. “You need to check your facts before you post.”
But Woods holds to her extreme stance on guns, despite its apparent unpopularity, just as she stands behind her extreme position against abortion, even for a women who was raped.
“If you’ve looked at my voting record at all, what you will know is I’m an independent thinker,” Woods told Denver Post reporter John Frank in January.
“Republicans like Laura Woods see their party falling apart, and they are doing everything they can to trash anyone else who might potentially take away votes from whatever consevative base they might have,” said Hans Romer, the Libertarian candidate running against Woods and Zenzinger. “Laura Woods is playing politics.”
The outcome of Woods race against Zenzinger will likely determine control of state government, political analysts say, as Republicans hold a slim one-seat majority in the state senate. Democrats already control the governor’s office, and it’s likely they’ll retain control of the state house, after November’s election.
This post was updated with a comment from Romer.