Iowa Voters Will Decide if Gun-Related Amendment is Added to Constitution
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(Radio Iowa) Early voting for Iowa’s General Election began this week and a proposed amendment to the state’s constitution is on the back of the ballot.

Richard Rogers of the Iowa Firearms Coalition says gun rights advocates began lobbying for it 12 years ago — after they realized Iowa is one of only six states without state level constitutional protection of the right to keep and bear arms. The amendment says any gun restrictions would have to be judged by a legal standard called strict scrutiny. Rogers says the U.S. Supreme Court set up an even tougher legal standard in a ruling this summer.

“Frankly, the strict scrutiny thing I believe has largely been muted, but we can’t go back 12 years and rewrite the amendment and this is an all or nothing deal, I think,” Rogers says. “We’ll have this one chance and we won’t see another opportunity to put this in the state constitution in our lifetime.” Critics say if this STATE constitutional amendment is adopted, it will be nearly impossible to pass new gun safety measures in Iowa. Linn County Sheriff Brian Gardner has joined Iowans for Responsible Gun Laws, a coalition of 30 different groups.

“We are not anti-gun, we are not anti-Second Amendment and we are not here to suggest taking your guns away,” Gardner said. “We are, however, here to inform you of a very poorly worded amendment that definitely will not make Iowans safer.” The only other states with similar constitutional amendments are Alabama, Missouri and Louisiana.

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