• Legislative update week 14

    April 17, 2016


    Legislative update week 14

    Iowans-

    The 2016 legislative session will be over very soon. Some legislators are predicting the session could be complete as soon as Friday. Lawmakers’ per diem payments end Tuesday, and it’s an election year. So you can bet they want to get this session wrapped up and get home as quickly as possible.

    We need to you to make it clear that they have unfinished business in the Senate. HF2314, the Privacy Protection Act, is fully eligible for a vote in the full Senate. This bill protects hundreds of thousands of Iowans who have a Permit to Carry or Permit to Acquire from having their personal information collected and broadcast worldwide. This has happened before here in Iowa, and it’s had very real consequences for a number of our members. We’ve been working for the last two years to get this law changed. This year we’ve pushed this bill farther than ever before. But the clock is ticking on the 2016 session, and we need all the help we can to make this meaningful bill unavoidable for the Senate in the final days of the 2016 legislative session.

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    Finally, thanks to the hundreds of you who joined us yesterday at the American Suppressor Association’s suppressor rally in Searsboro. The event featured the biggest suppressor manufacturers, free ammo and plenty of cans to try out. We joined the ASA, the National Rifle Association and the folks from Brownell’s for this great event.

    We were proud to accept the American Suppressor Association’s 2016 Partnership Award on behalf of all of you who helped us legalize suppressors in Iowa. We’re extremely proud to have you all on our team. You can read our After Action Report from the suppressor rally on the website.

    Thank you for your continued support of the Iowa Firearms Coalition. More updates to come!


    Iowa Firearms Coalition is an entirely volunteer, grassroots, Second Amendment advocacy group. Responsible for bringing uniformity to Iowa’s Permit to Carry process, IFC’s members work to protect and enhance Second Amendment rights in Iowa. An affiliate of the National Rifle Association, the IFC actively seeks to foster and promote the shooting sports. Sign up for our email list for the latest on Second Amendment issues in Iowa. You can support our work by becoming a member, or making a donation. 

  • Suppressor Rally – After Action Report

    April 17, 2016

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    Yesterday was the kind of day that makes me proud to be a part of the Iowa Firearms Coalition.

    Starting at 10 AM this past Saturday morning, hundreds of people from all over the state flocked to Brownells’ Big Springs Range in Searsboro to attend the American Suppressor Association’s suppressor shoot. ASA, in conjunction with Brownells, held the event to celebrate the recent passage of HF2279, the Hearing Protection Act, and to educate Iowans about suppressors, their use, and the process of obtaining them.

    Staffed by representatives of over half a dozen suppressor manufacturers from all over the country and a few local dealers, those who came were treated to free ammo to fire through a wide assortment of suppressed firearms, ranging from bolt action .338 Lapua Magnums to Kriss Vectors, from Ruger MkIIIs and 1911s to Uzis and ARs. It was a veritable gun cornucopia, all stocked with the finest cans the market has to offer.

    On hand to greet and talk to people were IFC board member and NRA VP Pete Brownell and his father Frank, Brownells’ communications director Ryan Repp and his cohort Roy Hill, the intrepid leaders of the ASA Knox and Michael Williams, and of course, several members of the IFC board and executive committee, including fellow lobbyist Richard Rogers. Representative Matt Windschitl (R-H17), the champion of Second Amendment virtues in the Iowa Legislature, was there with his wife and kids as well.

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    As I walked around chatting with Iowans who drove anywhere from just ten minutes to come, to three hours from the farthest reaches of the state, just to see, shoot and learn about suppressors, I was struck by just how large of a positive impact we’ve made on gun owning Iowans. It’s easy to lose track of this in the daily grind at the Capitol, after all the meetings and phone calls and e-mails. But everywhere I looked I saw the smiling faces of good folks enjoying the fellowship of other gun owners and their families, and it more than reminded me why we do what we do.

    In a private moment away from the crowds, I stood with Matt Windschitl and I asked him how it felt to witness the result of all his hard work. His reply? “*Our* hard work, you mean.”

    Our hard work indeed.

    In appreciation of that hard work, ASA saw fit to honor you and IFC with their 2016 Partnership Award, to recognize your excellence in suppressor advocacy. Attached are some pictures of that award. As you look at them, remember: The award is *yours*. I only received it on your behalf because we couldn’t fit the thousands of you up on that flat-bed trailer.

    Everyone, thank you SO much for everything you do. The session isn’t even over yet, and we’ve already chalked up two more in the win column. IFC would be absolutely nowhere without all your e-mails and your phone calls to legislators, and of course, all your memberships, donations and ongoing moral and volunteer support.

    You all truly define the meaning of “group effort” and “teamwork” and it’s one of the most amazing and heartwarming things to witness and be part of. With a dash of luck hopefully I’ll be able to report still another win or two before this session is over…And if and when that happens, whether it’s this year or next year or in the years ahead, take pride in knowing that you’re part of a statewide coalition of thousands people who all know that freedom starts right here at home, and they all have your back to protect it.

    Thanks again for all you do, everyone. It is an honor to work with you and for you.

    All hands to the middle,
    Barry
    IFC President

     


    Iowa Firearms Coalition is an entirely volunteer, grassroots, Second Amendment advocacy group. Responsible for bringing uniformity to Iowa’s Permit to Carry process, IFC’s members work to protect and enhance Second Amendment rights in Iowa. An affiliate of the National Rifle Association, the IFC actively seeks to foster and promote the shooting sports. Sign up for our email list for the latest on Second Amendment issues in Iowa. You can support our work by becoming a member, or making a donation. 

  • Iowa Senate PASSES Hearing Protection Act 46-4!

    March 17, 2016

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    Success in the Senate!

    At approximately 9:30 Thursday morning the Iowa Senate passed House File 2279 by a vote of 46 to 4. HF2279, the Hearing Protection Act, removes suppressors from Iowa’s list of so-called “offensive weapons.” If signed into law this would legalize the civilian ownership of firearm suppressors in the State of Iowa. For years the Iowa Senate has a literal dead-end for most every gun bill introduced in the Iowa legislature.

    When given an opportunity to speak out against the legalization of suppressors in Iowa not a single Senator chose to do so. In fact the only Senator who said anything was Senator Julian Garrett of Warren County who noted how long overdue this bill is and long we’ve been working to legalize suppressors in Iowa.

    Those voting against the bill were:

    Joe Bolkcom
    Bob Dvorsky
    Rob Hogg
    Herman Quirmbach

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    What comes next?

    There was an amendment attached by the Senate to HF2279. No need to worry though, the bill’s original intent remains intact. The amendment merely cleanup up a few small grammatical errors.

    The Hearing Protection Act now goes back to the House of Representatives. The House will have to decide whether or not to approve the amendment. The Iowa Firearms Coalition has been in ongoing discussions with the House leadership and they have indicated they will address the issue in a quick manner. We fully expect the House to approve the amendment and send HF2279 to Governor Branstad’s desk in short order. Tentative indications are the Governor will sign the bill.

    Community support

    The Iowa Firearms Coalition has been leading the fight to legalize suppressors in Iowa for years. Along the way we’ve been proud to work closely with the National Rifle Association and American Suppressor Association in the Iowa capitol. Other’s claim to have worked on legalizing suppressors, but we assure you they were no where to be found in the capitol during the numerous subcommittee meetings, lobby days, legislator education days, and so on.

    If you’re in support of Iowans’ right to own suppressors, you should be supporting those who’ve been fighting to protect and enhance your rights for years. Become an Iowa Firearms Coalition member today!


    Iowa Firearms Coalition is an entirely volunteer, grassroots, Second Amendment advocacy group. Responsible for bringing uniformity to Iowa’s Permit to Carry process, IFC’s members work to protect and enhance Second Amendment rights in Iowa. An affiliate of the National Rifle Association, the IFC actively seeks to foster and promote the shooting sports. Sign up for our email list for the latest on Second Amendment issues in Iowa. You can support our work by becoming a member, or making a donation. 

  • Legislative update week 5

    February 14, 2016

    Legislative update week 5

    Iowans-

    It’s been another busy week on the Second Amendment front. While there’s been little movement in the legislature the Iowa Firearms Coalition has been working hard behind the scenes to further our cause.

    Monday we partnered with the National Rifle Association, the American Suppressor Association, SilencerCo, and CrossRoads Shooting Sports to hold a suppressor education day for Iowa’s legislators and media. We had lawmakers from both sides of the aisle from both the House and the Senate in attendance. All of our guests walked away with a new-found appreciation for these devices. This video of WHO-TV’s Jannay Towne shooting a suppressed .22 pretty much sums up everyone’s response from the day.

    This week we also finally got the tally of who voted for and against the pro-gun bills advancing through the House of Representatives. We’ve posted the list for each bill, including the contact information for each legislator. If you haven’t already please take a moment to thank those who voted to advance these bills. If you wish to contact those who opposed these bills we ask that you do so in a respectful manner. We’ve already received word that some of those who opposed the bills initially have gotten more information and may end up voting in favor of them when this legislation is brought before the entire House.

    Also, don’t forget, February 23rd is our Second Amendment Day in the Iowa legislature. The day begins at 8AM. The House of Representatives gavels in at 8:30AM and the Senate begins their day at 9:00AM. There’s a chance we could see votes on the pro-gun bills in House as early as 10AM.

    The Iowa Firearms Coalition will be providing t-shirts, talking points, and valuable information to those who join us. We’ll also be joined by the National Rifle Association and the American Suppressor Association. Please make plans to attend, and bring a friend or two as well!

    Finally, we must address a recent post of ours that has collected a remarkable amount of attention. Late last week KWWL ran a heavily promoted and heavily edited story titled “The Gun Test.” In it a KWWL anchor brings in several young children, their parents and a Lieutenant from the Waterloo Police Department. The officer makes it clear the gun is unloaded, but repeatedly reminds the viewer this is still “an actual weapon.” The gun is placed next to a pile of toys and the children are left unsupervised. Just as the anchor intended the kids quickly found the gun and began pointing it at one another EXCEPT for the two who come from families that own guns.

    It’s a powerful story that dramatically drives home the importance of talking to your kids about what to do if they come across a gun. But “The Gun Test” was also illegal under the Iowa law that blocks family’s right to teach their kids to shoot handguns. This law seriously hinders a parent’s ability to address a child’s natural curiosity. The Iowa Firearms Coalition believes Iowa families should be able to exercise their rights without fear of committing a crime. We also believe gun owning families should not have to wait until their children are 14 to teach them proper respect for firearms.

    In the strongest possible way the Iowa Firearms Coalition encourages families everywhere, whether they own guns or not, to talk to your kids about what to do if you find a gun. The National Rifle Association’s Eddie Eagle program is an outstanding resource for all families. It teaches kids to:

    1. Stop
    2. Don’t touch
    3. Run away
    4. Tell a grown-up

    KWWL’s Gun Test story was intended to scare parents into talking to their kids about guns. But it also highlights the rediculousness of Iowa’s youth shooting law. With your help we’re working to change that. The Youth Safety & Parental Rights Act recently passed a House committee vote 17 to 4 with major bipartisan support.

    If you believe you have the right to teach your kids to shoot when they prove they’re ready, not when a handful of lawmakers think so, please contact your legislators and urge them to support the Youth Safety & Parental Rights Act.

    More updates to come. Thank you for your ongoing support of the Iowa Firearms Coalition!


    Iowa Firearms Coalition is an entirely volunteer, grassroots, Second Amendment advocacy group. Responsible for bringing uniformity to Iowa’s Permit to Carry process, IFC’s members work to protect and enhance Second Amendment rights in Iowa. An affiliate of the National Rifle Association, the IFC actively seeks to foster and promote the shooting sports. Sign up for our email list for the latest on Second Amendment issues in Iowa. You can support our work by becoming a member, or making a donation. 

     

  • Omnibus Gun Bills Survive Funnel Week – Day by Day Recap

    March 7, 2015
    Omnibus pro-gun owner bill survives first funnel in Iowa Legislature.

    It was truly a whirlwind in the Iowa Legislature last week, but the Omnibus Pro-Gun Owner bills have survived. They now enter a critical phase, and must be kept in their original form if they are to be signed into law.

     

    Email your legislators – Tell Iowa’s lawmakers to pass the Omnibus Gun Bills WITHOUT ALTERATION.

     

    Sunday – March 1st

    Weekly Iowa Firearms Coalition membership email alerts thousands of Iowans about a massive pro-gun owner bill known as “The Omnibus Gun Bill.

    An IFC Advocacy Campaign and petition is activated and thousands of emails telling Iowa lawmakers to pass the omnibus gun bill flood the capitol.

    Monday – March 2nd

    Iowa Firearms Coalition President Barry Snell, and IFC board members Pete Brownell and Scott Volquartsen are guests on WHO Radio’s Mickelson in the Morning show. Word of the omnibus gun bill begins to spread at a rapid pace.

    House Study Bill 201, the House version of the omnibus gun bill, introduced. HSB201 is assigned to the House Judiciary Committee where it is then assigned to a three person subcommittee.

    The Des Moines Register prints the first of what will be many stories about the omnibus gun bill. As expected, the mass media is trying derail this pro-gun owner bill.

    Tuesday – March 3rd

    HSB201 passes its first hurdle the House Judiciary subcommittee. The vote is 3-0, with bi-partisan support

    The Des Moines Register doubles down on its opposition to the omnibus gun bill. Their editorial board attempts to justify why they should be able to publish the personal information of gun owners (a key provision of the omnibus gun bill would make this illegal in Iowa).  Meanwhile lobbyists working on behalf of all of Iowa’s newspapers and broadcasters begin to pressure legislators to remove the gun owner privacy protection portion of the omnibus gun bill.

    Senate Study Bill 1251, a companion bill to HSB201 is introduced in the Senate. It is assigned to the Senate Judiciary Committee, and then to a three person subcommittee. SSB1251 contains the exact same items as HSB201. Each bill accomplishes the same goals.

    Wednesday – March 4th

    HSB201 passes a vote by the House Judiciary Committee by a landslide – 19  to 2. Republicans and Democrats flock to this bill. This vote insures the House version of the omnibus gun bill will survive the first funnel, a critical advance or die deadline scheduled for the end of the day Friday, March 6th.

    For the third day in a row the Des Moines Register lashes out at the omnibus gun bill. Mass media lobbyists scramble to get the Senate version of the omnibus gun owner bill amended to remove the gun owner privacy provision. IFC’s volunteer lobbyists are working overtime to counter the media’s message, and remind Iowa lawmakers that they’re there to serve Iowa’s citizens and not the mass media.

    A small contingent of gun control Senators begin applying pressure to members of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Want to strip the omnibus gun bill of a measure that would repeal the ban on supervised youth handgun shooting.

    The Iowa Firearms Coalition alerts our members to this two-pronged attack on the omnibus gun bill, and encourage members to contact their legislators and tell them to pass SSB1251 as written. IFC members respond on a moment’s notice and begin a grassroots effort to get SSB1251 passed as written.

    Meanwhile, SSB1251 passes out of its Senate Judiciary subcommittee on a 3 to 0 vote. Once again a unanimous vote, with Republicans and Democrats supporting the omnibus gun bill. Most importantly it passes as written.

    Thursday – March 5th

    Pressure to amend SSB1251 continues to mount. Senators pushing a gun control agenda are trying to get the omnibus gun bill amended to remove the repeal of Iowa’s ban on supervised youth handgun shooting. Lobbyists for the mass media are trying to amend the bill so that they may continue to publish gun owners private information whenever they want.

    IFC members continue their grassroots effort to get SSB1251 passed as written.

    The omnibus gun bill comes up for a vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee. It passes 10 to 3 without any amendments. IFC members have succeeded in keeping the omnibus gun bill intact. Support for SSB1251 once again comes from both sides of the aisle with an overwhelming number of Republicans and Democrats voting yes.

    SSB1251, the Senate version of the omnibus gun bill has now officially passed the first funnel and is ready for a debate and vote in the entire Senate.

    Friday – March 6th

    IFC leadership and members breathe a small sigh of relief. Both versions of the omnibus gun bill have survived the first funnel.

    Work begins to keep the omnibus gun bills intact before votes in the full Senate and House. The content of the House and Senate bills are the same, but there are a few minor differences in the language. An amendment to make the wording of these bills the exact same will be needed.

    The omnibus gun bills now enter the most dangerous phase of the legislative process. Any changes or amendments beyond a slight wording change will kill these bills. This means if anyone attempts to remove anything from the omnibus bills they will die. Just as importantly, if anyone attempts to add anything to the content of these bills they will die.

    The omnibus gun bills have been carefully crafted. Each provision of the bill was included because it has strong support and could be signed into law. Many groups have a stake in this bill, IFC, the NRA, the American Suppressor Association, law enforcement, and more. We didn’t get everything we wanted in this bill, but we got a lot of very good stuff in there. Adding or removing anything to these bills will cause key players to pull their support. Should that happen everything that is good for Iowa’s firearms owners will disappear in an instant. It is critical the omnibus bills move forward without out change.

     

    Email your legislators – Tell Iowa’s lawmakers to pass the Omnibus Gun Bills WITHOUT ALTERATION.

     


    Iowa Firearms Coalition is an entirely volunteer, grassroots, 2nd Amendment advocacy group. Responsible for bringing uniformity to Iowa’s Concealed Weapons Permitting process, IFC’s members work to protect and enhance 2nd Amendment rights in Iowa. An affiliate of the National Rifle Association, the IFC actively seeks to foster and promote the shooting sports. Sign up for our email list for the latest on 2nd Amendment issues in Iowa. You can support our work by becoming a member, or making a donation.

  • Ohio Legislature Approves Suppressors for Hunting

    December 11, 2014

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    Lawmakers in Ohio have just approved the legalization of suppressors for hunting. The bill is now waiting for Ohio Governor John Kasich’s signature (which he’s expected to sign). Our counterparts in Ohio, the Buckeye Firearms Association, have been working extremely hard to legalize suppressors. Yesterday the Ohio House of Representatives passed H.B.234 by a massive 69-16 margin. Once again we’re seeing that when legislators take the time to thoroughly examine the legalization of suppressors the vast majority of reasonable lawmakers find no reason to oppose such a bill.

    During the 2014 legislative session the National Rifle Association, the Iowa Firearms Coalition, and the American Suppressor Association all pushed for the legalization of suppressors in Iowa. The bill passed through the Iowa House of Representatives with overwhelming bipartisan support, only to be stopped cold by the anti-gun chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee Rob Hogg. Full details on the plight of last year’s suppressor bill can be found HERE.

    A bill to legalize suppressors will likely be brought up again in the 2015 legislative session. Fortunately for Iowa’s firearms community Sen. Rob Hogg is no longer the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee. He’s been replaced by Senator Steve Sodders, of State Center. Sodders has been supportive of some of our pro-2nd Amendment bills in the past, but has opposed others.

    Remember, the primary role of a suppressor is to reduce the overall sound signature of the host firearm to hearing safe levels. Contrary to popular belief, they do not “silence” or eliminate the noise of a gunshot. Rather, they trap the expanding gasses at the muzzle of a firearm and allow them to slowly cool, in a similar fashion to car mufflers. Their muffling capabilities intrinsically make them a hearing protection device for both the shooter and those around them.

    If you’d like to see suppressors legalized in Iowa, there are two very important steps you can take right now before the 2015 legislative session begins:

    1) Contact your legislators and tell them you want them to legalize suppressors as well as protect and enhance your 2nd Amendment rights.

    2) Fill out Senator Steve Sodders’ 2015 legislative priorities survey and make sure he knows that Iowa’s firearms community has high expectations for him.

    Bonus: Sign up for our email list to for the latest on pro-2nd Amendment bills, and Action Alerts to help advance our cause.


    Iowa Firearms Coalition is an entirely volunteer, grassroots, 2nd Amendment advocacy group. Responsible for bringing uniformity to Iowa’s Concealed Weapons Permitting process, IFC’s members work to protect and enhance 2nd Amendment rights in Iowa. An affiliate of the National Rifle Association, the IFC actively seeks to foster and promote the shooting sports. Sign up for our email list for the latest on 2nd Amendment issues in Iowa. You can support our work by becoming a member, or making a donation.