Colorado gun law relies on flawed estimate

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In this July 20, 2014 photo, gun dealer Mel Bernstein carries box for a rifle while making a sale at his store, Dragonman's, east of Colorado Springs, Colo. When Colorado lawmakers expanded background checks on firearms last year, they were expecting a huge increase. But the actual number the first 12 months of the law is far lower than projected, according to an analysis of state data by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

DENVER (AP) — A law expanding background check requirements on Colorado gun sales has been in effect for about a year, and an Associated Press analysis of state data compiled during that span shows the projected impact was vastly overstated in a key budget report.

The discovery has prompted a prominent Democratic lawmaker to question how Legislative analysts could have come up with such an inaccurate projection for the cost of the law.

Republicans, meanwhile, have seized on the flawed estimate to resume criticism over a measure that helped lead to the ouster of three Democrats in the state Senate last year.

Still, supporters stand by the law as part of a package of gun restrictions meant to improve safety after devastating mass shootings.