(Denver, CO)  --  President Obama is applauding new gun safety laws in Colorado.  After meeting with law enforcement officials in Denver, the President said families and communities are "changed forever" by gun violence.  The new Colorado laws expand background checks and limit high-capacity ammunition clips.  The President argued that neither regulation threatens constitutional protections on gun ownership.  He said, "Colorado has shown that practical progress is possible." 

The President noted that the Denver area has experienced two horrific mass shootings since 1999.  He also cited December's deadly school shooting spree in Newtown, Connecticut.  Since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Obama said more than two-thousand people have been killed by guns across the U.S.  He put more pressure on Congress to pass new federal laws aimed at reducing gun violence, calling them "common sense" regulations.  

Enthusiasm for new gun controls is waning in Congress.  Legislation faces stiff opposition from the powerful National Rifle Association and is opposed by most Republicans and Democrats from conservative-leaning states.  Obama's proposals include universal background checks and a ban on military-style assault weapons.  He called them "weapons of war."  

The President also wants to curb high-capacity ammo magazines and prohibit illicit gun trafficking.  He stressed that the nation has suffered "too much pain" over gun violence and said many Americans support "sensible" gun safety laws.  Obama also scoffed at the notion that the government aims to confiscate guns from law-abiding gun owners.