Governor Kim Reynolds of Iowa has signed legislation into law that allows individuals to own and carry weapons in Iowa without a permit. The law, dubbed “constitutional carry” by some supporters, would go into effect on July 1.
“Today I signed legislation protecting the Second Amendment rights of Iowa’s law-abiding citizens while still preventing the sale of firearms to criminals and other dangerous individuals,” Reynolds said in a statement Friday afternoon.
On March 18, 2021, Breitbart News reported constitutional carry legislation, House File 756, passed the Iowa House and was headed to the Senate.
The bill was signed just weeks after two high-profile mass shootings in Atlanta, Georgia, and Boulder, Colorado, reignited the controversy over gun laws.
According to Democrats and gun violence awareness groups, the legislation will roll back background checks on private citizen handgun purchases. That’s because Iowans must clear a background check to secure a permit to carry or possess a handgun before they can lawfully purchase one in a private transaction under existing law.
In her speech, Reynolds lauded those provisions, saying they “take greater steps to inform law enforcement about an individual’s mental illness, helping to ensure firearms don’t end up in the wrong hands.”
“We will never be able to outlaw or prevent every single bad actor from getting a gun, but what we can do is ensure law-abiding citizens have full access to their constitutional rights while keeping Iowans safe,” she emphasized, reports The Gazette.
Pro-gun advocates like the National Rifle Association praised Reynolds, while critics promised to make the bill a problem for Reynolds when she runs for reelection next year.
“Despite the misinformation pushed by Democrats and coastal interest groups,” Republican Party of Iowa Chair Jeff Kaufmann said on Twitter that the bill makes it more difficult for offenders to purchase guns and defends the rights of law-abiding people.
“There is only one party committed to protecting the rights and freedoms of Iowans and that’s the Republican Party,” Kaufmann added.