Iowa Moms: Don't Pass Gun Bill

Mar 19, 2015

Members of a gun safety group that formed after the Sandy Hook school shootings in Connecticut were at the Iowa statehouse today. They’re lobbying against a bill awaiting debate in the Iowa Senate that critics say will expand access to firearms. 

Jess Calhoun of Ames is with the Iowa affiliate of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.

“We want to work to see more common sense solutions to gun violence in our country,” Calhoun says.

The bill would let children of any age possess a firearm with adult supervision. But Calhoun says she’s more concerned that the bill eliminates the required permit to acquire a handgun. She says that means no required background checks for private gun sales.

“Iowa is one of 17 states that have expanded background checks,” Calhoun says.  “That means we go above and beyond federal law.”

The bill would also eliminate the three-day waiting period to purchase a handgun. And it would keep confidential the names of those with permits to carry weapons, which the Iowa Newspaper Association opposes.  

The bill would create a new statewide database for gun permits and streamline training for gun owners. Those provisions are backed by law enforcement.

The bill passed the Republican-controlled House without debate. Democratic Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal says it is unlikely to pass the Senate in its present form.