Republican State Rep. Steve Holt and Iowa State Sen. Dan Dawson announced on Thursday a bill introduced that will bring constitutional carry to Iowa.
It will do much more than that, however.
Holt said Republicans have made “remarkable progress” in defense of the Second Amendment in Iowa the last few years.
“Republicans have worked hard to make the Second Amendment great again in Iowa,” he said.
They’ve strengthened Stand Your Ground laws, they’ve removed “the arbitrary age limit” for parents to be able to teach their children about firearms, they lengthened the amount of time a permit to carry is valid for, they strengthened pre-emption, ensured gun stores and the Second Amendment couldn’t be attacked during times of emergency and completed the process to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot to enshrine the Second Amendment rights in the Iowa Constitution.
In addition, this year they’ve worked to protect firearm and ammunition manufacturers from frivolous lawsuits intended to put them out of business.
“We will not tolerate backdoor assaults to attack the Second Amendment in the state of Iowa,” Holt said.
Holt said House Study Bill 254 represents a “major step forward” in the fight to secure Second Amendment rights in Iowa.
It will allow EMTs assigned to tactical teams to get a professional permit to carry and make those teams safer. It will allow active and reserve police officers to carry firearms on school grounds on and off duty. It will expand opportunites for handgun safety training. It will strengthen pre-emption to ensure local municipalities cannot regulate the carrying of firearms. It will prevent landlords in government-assisted housing from banning firearms.
“And finally, and perhaps most importantly, this legislation will do what Second Amendment advocates have asked me and many others to support and get done ever since I assumed office six years ago,” Holt said. “This has been a priority of mine and many other Republicans ever since we assumed office. This bill will make permit to carry optional. This bill will bring constitutional carry to the state.”
Holt said the bill doesn’t have everything Second Amendment advocates want, but no bill ever does. And he vowed Second Amendment-supporting legislators will continue to fight.
“All of the progress we have made was not in one bill but in numerous pieces of legislation over a period of years,” he said. “We have made great progress, but we must continue to work for more. We will continue to push back against those who fear freedom more than they fear tyranny.”