(JEFFERSON CITY, Mo.) As Republicans in the General Assembly pursue their legislation in reaction to the Newtown school shooting, Missouri Democrats are joining the conversation, too.
On Friday, Democratic State Rep. Mike Colona introduced his own bill that, if passed, would require all guns to be secured when not in use.
"We have a duty to keep guns away from our children, guests and those who simply shouldn't have firearms," said Colona. "Responsibility needs to be the main requirement for gun ownership in our state - not just a nice option. My bill creates the accountability necessary to keep our communities safe."
Colona's bill would make it a class A misdemeanor for individuals to leave their guns out of a safe or without a locking device when not in use. He said his bill would except police officers and active-duty service members.
Earlier in the week, State Rep. Stacey Newman, a Clayton Democrat, filed legislation that would eliminate the so-called "gun show loophole," that allows weapons to be sold at gun shows without background checks.
"After the recent horrific massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, we must ensure that all firearms purchases, regardless of where they are sold, include the same comprehensive background checks as required for licensed firearm dealers," she said in a statement.
It is unclear where the Democratic legislative proposals will go in a Republican-controlled General Assembly, especially considering Gov. Jay Nixon's relative silence on the issue.
In his only comments to reporters about post-Newtown legislation, Nixon said only that he would be in favor of expanding the state's mental health services, but hardly mentioned guns.