Tochtrop said several Democrats were concerned about Magpul’s threat to leave the state, and she hasn’t decided how she’ll vote on the magazine bill.
“I hate to see a business leave the state on legislation that is going to be very hard to enforce,” she said.
Gunmakers are also threatening to leave other states if curbs on firearms are approved. In Maryland, where Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley wants to ban semi-automatic weapons and high-capacity magazines, Accokeek-based Beretta U.S.A. Corp. said it’s being courted by other states at a legislative hearing this month.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry and South Carolina Rep. Jeff Duncan, both Republicans, recently invited Magpul to relocate to their states, Rep. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., said in a statement on Feb. 20.
Colorado’s gun industry contributed 4,765 jobs, an economic impact of $590.7 million, and $43 million in state tax revenue in 2012, according to data compiled by the Newtown, Connecticut- based National Shooting Sports Foundation, an industry group.
These jobs included positions in manufacturing, which employed 133,400 in December, and retail trade, where 244,500 worked in the same period, according to the state’s Labor Department.
While the firearms industry’s contribution to the state’s $264 billion private-sector gross domestic product is small, it has a multiplier effect of two — meaning it creates a job somewhere else for each person it employs — that helped prop up Colorado’s struggling manufacturing sector, said Gary Horvath, a Broomfield-based economist.
“The key thing here is that all jobs are important,” he said. “You would hate to see the state lose anyone, particularly given the economy.”