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Sen. Zach Nunn (R-Bondurant) spoke in support of House File 2502 on Monday during an Iowa Senate Judiciary Committee meeting. The bill only reinforces current law, which is supposed to prohibit political subdivisions from having more restrictive gun laws than the state.

Nunn said he’s concerned about the government stripping away a right and then failing to defend someone with it.

“When I walk into my county courthouse in Jasper, and they have a sticker saying this is a no-gun zone, but you walk in here and someone pulls out a weapon and someone starts shooting at you, you have no right to defend yourself. I’ve now empowered government to take away my right but provide me no protection under the law.”

Nunn continued.

“We’ve had this conversation. We’ve put it before the state and we have it in the constitutional amendment coming forward, and we still have local governments that find ways to sneak around it, slap a sticker on the wall, make up a political statement if that’s where that conversation goes, but then provide no safety under the law.”

Nunn said he wants kids to be in a safe environment. When he carries his weapon, he says he is doing it to provide a level of safety.

“When we ask to be able to provide a level of baseline security going into a courtroom, going into a school, going into an area where there is going to be a no-gun zone, then we are asking that entity to protect us in the same way that I or you would protect our child or grandchild.”

Nunn said he hopes the bill provides some consistency to prioritize those areas where local governments are being asked to provide additional responsibility. And, he said, perhaps provide some resources for it.

He said he also represents Polk County, but he has concerns with the 24 buildings Des Moines has that are gun-free zones.

“When we’re designating 24-plus facilities as ‘gun-free zones’ for good people, and then providing no layer of protection or security for them, we’re putting them in jeopardy,” Nunn said. “That is not local government helping us. That is local government giving us the bumper sticker of feeling safe with zero ability to respond.”