Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Iowa Constitutional Carry Bill Passes House, Senate


 Iowa state seal

Constitutional Carry is an approximation of the state of law in the United States when the Second Amendment was ratified in 1791. At that time no permit was required to carry a weapon either openly or concealed in the United States.

The Iowa House voted on 18 March, to pass HF756, a gun law reform bill which includes Constitutional Carry. The bill passed the House 60 to 37, with all but one Democrat opposing the reforms. The Republican House Majority leader Matt Windschitl, disputed the idea the bill would make Iowans less safe. From desmoinesregister.com:

Windschitl disputed the idea that the bill would eliminate any background checks.

"It doesn’t," he said. "And anybody who thinks that that’s House Republicans’ motives, you’re incorrect. That’s wrong. We’re not trying to make Iowa less safe. We’re not trying to eliminate background checks. What we’re doing with this piece of legislation is advancing Iowans’ freedoms."

The NRA reported Governor Kim  Reynolds supported Constitutional Carry in 2018. 

CBS2iowa.com, reported Governor Reynolds declined to support permitless carry in 2019. 

“I think the background check is the right thing to do but we’ll see what kind of traction it has and where it goes and we’ll take a look at it," Reynolds said Tuesday. "I’m going to keep an open mind but I support the legislation I voted for in 2010.

Refusing to come out in support of a bill is weak evidence of lack of support for the bill two years later.  With large majorities of Republicans in both the House and the Senate, the chances of the bill passing seem very good. 

The bill puts into legislative action what the legislature has approved for an Iowa Constitutional Amendment, which will come up for referendum in the 2022 elections.

Iowa is one of only six states which do not have any protection in their state constitution for the right to keep and bear arms (RKBA). 

The proposed amendment is;  From iowa.gov:

Right to Keep and bear arms,

Sec. 1A. The right of the people to keep and bear arms shal not be infringed. The sovereign state of Iowa affirms and recognizes this right to be a fundamental individual right. Any and all restrictions of this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny.

This amendment is in the final state of approval, that of passing a referendum of the voters.  HF756 merely puts into statutory law what will almost certainly be approved by the voters.

No RKBA amendment has been rejected by voters. All have passed with large majorities. It is a near certainty the Iowa amendment will pass.

HF756 is part of a series of bills in the Iowa legislature meant to restore Second Amendment rights in Iowa, and to roll back parts of the administrative state. 

The chance of the Iowa Senate passing the Constitutional Carry bill looks good. The chance of Governor Kim Reynolds signing the bill looks good. Reynolds may be considering how much support Governor Kristi Noem is being given in Republican circles. Governor Noem signed the South Dakota Constitutional Carry Bill rapidly and with a flourish. 

If Iowa restores Constitutional Carry it will become a member of the Constitutional Carry club of states. Currently, there are 18 members.  Vermont has always had Constitutional Carry. The 17 states which have restored Constitutional Carry, are: Alaska (2003); Arizona (2010); Wyoming (2011); Arkansas (2013); Kansas and Maine (2015); Idaho, Missouri, West Virginia, and Mississippi (2016); New Hampshire and North Dakota (2017); South Dakota, Oklahoma, and Kentucky (2019); Utah and Montana, so far in 2021.

Three states, Iowa, Tennessee, and Indiana are all in the running for the next state to restore Constitutional Carry.  

Update: The Iowa Senate has passed the bill. It is awaiting the signature of the governor.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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1 comment:

ScienceABC123 said...

It's a shame we have to pass a law in order to permit a Constitutional right.