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Iowa: Ensure Your Firearms Freedoms are a Priority This Session

Thursday, January 23, 2014

The second week of the 85th Iowa General Assembly is underway in the Hawkeye State, and your NRA-ILA continues to work in Des Moines with the Iowa Firearms Coalition (IFC) and your state legislators to protect, restore and advance your Second Amendment rights.  It is imperative that your state legislators hear from you, as we work with them to ensure Iowans’ firearms freedoms are made a priority this session.  Call and e-mail your state Senator and Representative today!  Respectfully tell them you support fortifying your gun rights with a STRONG and meaningful state constitutional Right to Keep and Bear Arms amendment, protecting the privacy of Iowans' records, and legalizing suppressor ownership.

Iowa is one of only six states without a state constitutional Right to Keep and Bear Arms protection provision.  All proposed restrictions to any of your fundamental rights should be subject to a standard that ensures the strongest possible protection for the right, and your fundamental right to keep and bear arms is no exception!  Iowa needs this proposed amendment and its protections now more than ever to defend and restore gun rights which are under constant assault.  State Representative Matt Windschitl (R-17) has been working with the NRA to draft this necessary language to reinforce your Second Amendment rights.  Encourage your state Senator and Representative to courageously stand up for your rights and the rights of all Iowans by supporting a STRONG Right to Keep and Bear Arms constitutional amendment!

Last year, legislation prohibiting the publication of the names and addresses of individuals possessing permits to acquire and carry firearms received overwhelming support in the House, but stalled in a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee.  This year, your NRA-ILA is working to ensure these important reforms continue to move through the state legislature and get enacted into law.  In other parts of the country, anti-gun media outlets abused their privileges under the Freedom of Information Act and have jeopardized the safety of law-abiding citizens by publishing the names and addresses of registered gun owners.  Contrary to their claims, these media elites have not increased public safety and have instead simply provided a map for criminals to use for their next burglary and firearm theft.  All legislators should stand up for their constituents, put aside their politics and agree: legislation to prevent the discriminatory, purposeful and reckless endangerment of law-abiding Iowans through exploitation of their personal information is necessary and should be made a priority.

Firearm suppressors, also referred to as "silencers,”  are currently illegal to own under Iowa state law, with limited exceptions, even though they are legal to own under Federal law and in 39 states.  While they do not eliminate the sound of a firearm, suppressors do reduce the muzzle report of the gun much in the same way that a muffler reduces exhaust noise from a car or truck.  The benefits associated with suppressor use include increased accuracy due to reduced recoil and muzzle blast, protection from hearing damage and reduced noise pollution.  Noise complaints are being used more frequently as an excuse to close shooting ranges, informal shooting areas, and hunting lands throughout the country.  Increased use of suppressors will help to eliminate many of these complaints and protect hunting and shooting areas well into the future.  Suppressors are an effective means of reducing hearing loss among shooters.  This session, tell your state legislators: The facts are clear. Iowans deserve the freedom to choose and use these beneficial safety devices.

In order to acquire a suppressor, a purchaser must submit the appropriate paperwork to the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives where long wait times for approval are unfortunately common (six to nine months or more), undergo a background check by the FBI, submit to fingerprinting, gain approval from their local law enforcement officer, find a licensed dealer authorized to conduct the transaction, and pay a one-time $200 tax for each device.  For more information on suppressors and their benefits, click here.

NRA-ILA will continue to keep you updated with bill numbers and status as the session progresses.  As always, please continue to check your e-mail and www.NRAILA.org for further updates.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.