• Message from the IFC Board — Effectively Communicating with Your Legislators

    January 23, 2015

    The following message was written by John Reed, Chairman of the Iowa Firearms Coalition’s Board of Directors. Reed is also one of our main lobbyists. He works extremely closely with our legislators on an almost daily basis, and provides valuable insight in how IFC members can maximize their effectiveness.


    Reed

    John Reed – IFC Board Chairman

    It occurs to me that some of you may not know how you can help to communicate with your legislators in a manner that will synchronize your message with ours. Of course, feel free to communicate anyway that you want, but if you want to be helping us in our efforts in a generic sort of way, here’s what you can do.

    Stress these two themes in all your communications, doing this will put an exclamation point on what the IFC lobbyists are saying on the hill.

    1) ALWAYS state clearly that you support and want them to support a Right to Keep and Bear Arms amendment to the Iowa Constitution and that you won’t settle for the federal wording. You want the enhanced language that National Rifle Association and Iowa Firearms Coalition has presented.

    It may happen that a bill would get introduced that would mimic the federal language. We’ve been told that such a bill would get strong support from nearly everyone in both chambers. However, that bill, should it come out, would NOT be anything IFC would support. Amending the Constitution is a long, arduous fight so it’s not done very much. Therefore, If we’re going to work to get an amendment through, that amendment MUST be the best we can get for future generations of Iowans.

    I think we can all agree that the federal language, while clear to us, has been problematic in this age, and is yet not properly applied to We the People’s rights. Therefore, the language we will be putting up (very soon) will be an amplified version wherein the meaning of the language is clarified.

    Example: Would you believe that there are some (perhaps many) who don’t understand that the word “bear” means “carry”? I personally find that absurd, but it’s there nonetheless. So, it’s imperative that the word “carry” be inserted into any amendment we put forth. In addition, our language would include the legal phrase, “strict scrutiny,” a phrase I’ll not explain here because you can easily look it up. But that phrase MUST be included in order that the high courts not easily erode the protection we intend the new amendment to afford our kids and grand kids.

    2) ALWAYS state clearly that their support of the Second Amendment will always benefit them and never harm them with the public. The 2nd Amendment is a winner for politicians – always has been and always will be. In fact, support for the 2nd Amendment is growing with the public as recent polls clearly point out.

    Some legislators seem to understand this to the extent that they know their district and how it feels about our firearms rights. But, even they become concerned when they think of other districts. Rare indeed is a district where a legislator would be punished for voting for any good firearms rights bills. You see, that’s what this is — it’s a civil, common law RIGHT. Firearms aren’t ‘social’ bills and we certainly don’t ask for money. This is about our CIVIL RIGHTS! Legislators who support civil rights win. Therefore, when they support firearms bills, they win! Help them understand that.

    Unless we are calling for you to support a specific action or issue, use the above as a guide to include with your communications to your legislators. Doing this would be helping us a great deal.

    Thank you for your efforts!

    John Reed
    Chair – Board of Directors
    Iowa Firearms Coalition

    Use the Iowa Firearms Coalition’s Legislative Action Center to find your legislators, send them a pro-Second Amendment email, and sign up for our newsletter.


    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.

  • IA DNR: 19% Increase In Deer Harvested During 1st Shotgun Season

    December 10, 2014
    An IFC member poses with two bucks successfully harvested on opening day of Iowa's 2014 1st shotgun season.

    An IFC member poses with two bucks successfully harvested on opening day of Iowa’s 2014 1st shotgun season.

     

    Hunters reported harvesting 19 percent more deer in Iowa during the first three days of first season shotgun deer compared to 2013 when cold weather likely minimized the amount of time hunters spent in the timber.  If the harvest trend continues, the first season shotgun harvest would be around 37,000 deer, which is similar to 2012.

    The 2014 first season shotgun deer closes on Dec. 10.

    A popular season with hunters is a busy weekend for wildlife officials.

    State Conservation Officer Brett Reece patrolled Benton and Tama counties during opening weekend.

    “I probably came across 40 deer hunters in northern Benton County Saturday and counted 11 deer that were harvested. Sunday, I came across 20 deer hunters in Tama County and about that many deer were harvested,” he said.

    “People had been telling me that deer numbers were pretty much stable compared to last year, but down from 10 years ago,” Reece said.

    In nearby Johnson County, State Conservation Officer Erika Billerbeck said she saw 70 hunters through the weekend.

    So far, hunters reported harvesting 18 percent more bucks and 7 percent more does than 2013, while purchasing 3,000 few licenses. The license sales decline was primarily due to fewer antlerless licenses begin available, which was by design.

    Iowa second season shotgun deer opens December 13 and the unseasonably mild temperatures in the weekend forecast could lead to more hunters having success.

    “When the weather is nice, we often see more people out hunting and hunter success rates increase because they spend more time in the field to fill their tags,” said Willie Suchy, wildlife research supervisor with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

    Information on hunter harvest is one tool used by the DNR to help manage Iowa’s deer herd when it considers seasons and regulation changes. A regulation change for 2014 restricted the deer harvest in 27 counties in northwest Iowa to buck-only during first season shotgun. During the second season shotgun, hunters may harvest any deer in those 27 counties.

    Second season shotgun license sales are trending similar to first season – hunters are waiting to the last minute.  The DNR expects to sell about 35,000 licenses before Saturday.  Second season shotgun closes Dec. 21. Hunters are required to report their harvest.


    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.