Senate File 460 passed through the Iowa Senate with flying colors. The legislation was unanimously supported, 48-0. Yet it did not advantage past its House subcommittee on Wednesday.
The Family Leader, The Family Leader Foundation, Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition, Father Flanagan’s Boys Home and Concerned Women For America of Iowa all registered in support of the bill, but nobody showed up to the subcommittee to speak in favor.
“Senate File 460 came late in the game,” said Representative Dustin Hite (R-Oskaloosa). “We just received it this week. Unfortunately nobody came to the subcommittee to speak in favor of the bill and answer questions. Because of the short time frame, I did not feel like we had adequate time to fully vet the bill.”
The bill relates to the dissemination and exhibition of obscene material to a minor by the parent or guardian of the minor.
Current law exempts parents and guardians from prosecution for knowingly disseminating or exhibiting obscene material to their minor child or ward.
Current code defines obscene material as any material depicting or describing the genitals, sex acts, masturbation, excretory functions or sadomasochistic abuse which the average person, taking the material as a whole and applying contemporary community standards with respect to what is suitable material for minors, would find appeals to the prurient interest and is patently offensive; and the material, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, scientific, political or artistic value.
A representative for the Iowa County Attorneys Association said the group was registered undecided. But, she said, it’s not a priority bill.
Representatives Michael Bergan (R-Dorchester) and Brian Meyer (D-Des Moines) didn’t say anything either.
Hite wrapped up the meeting without any comments as well, however he was able to respond to an email asking about the bill’s future.
“I want to ensure the bill does exactly what it is intended to do,” he said. “This bill is certainly something we can consider next year.”