On Wednesday, February 23rd, Democrats in the Iowa State House proved once more that they do not understand the liberty that the Constitution of the United States grants American citizens, They also proved that they have a hard time holding civil and educated debate on Second Amendment rights. The House started debate with Second Amendment oriented bills, and although they debated politely with others over some bills, on certain bills the Democrat Party reared its ugly head and the comments were terrible (click here to see for yourself). I have rarely seen such a display of ignorance, fear-mongering and spewing of hate on the House floor. I’m going to break a few of these bills down one by one, and then touch on the highlights of Democrat debate comments.
House File 2281: “An Act relating to the possession of a pistol, revolver, or ammunition by persons under fourteen years of age, and including effective date provisions.”
This bill was both a good bill for cleaning up the Iowa Code and for parental rights in the state of Iowa. Currently, the Iowa Code does not allow for children under the age of fourteen to learn proper handling and use of handguns under parental supervision, but the code allows for these same children under the age of fourteen to be instructed in the proper handling and use of rifles and shotguns. Along with making the code more cohesive and classifying handguns in the same realm as shotguns and rifles, this bill takes authority away from the government and puts it back in the right hands-those of the child’s parents.
I was amazed by the amount of ignorant, scheming and nasty remarks coming from members of the Democrat Party during debate over this bill, but congratulations Representatives Kirsten Running-Marquardt (D-Cedar Rapids) and Abby Finkenauer (D-Dubuque)-you two officially win for most ridiculous comments! In an emotional tirade that had very little to do with the actual bill, Running-Marquardt continually referred to, “Two, three and four year olds,” in order to try and add an emotional aspect to comments that were essentially her throwing a tantrum on the House floor. Representative Jake Highfill (R-Johnston) calmly replied to all her frantic questions by returning the focus to the purpose of the bill, saying at one point, “Parents and guardians have the ability to make those decisions; it is not our responsibility to make those decisions. We’re allowing them to make a decision…Parents know better than we do.”
When Finkenauer stood up to speak, she restrained herself much more than Running-Marquardt did; however, the content of her comments was just as rude and demeaning. Once again ignoring the fact that this bill deals with a Constitutional right to bear arms and liberty for the parents to instruct their children as they wish, she asked Highfill, “Logically, does it make sense for a one year old to hold and shoot a handgun?” and completely cut him off when he attempted to answer, saying, “Clearly, Representative Highfill does not understand logic.” She finished her comments by stating, “Logically, this bill is completely ridiculous, and today, just for a second, I ask you to forget your heart and just vote with logic, and if you do that, you’ll be joining me with a no on this vote.”
Although debate comments continued, it was clear that the Democrat Representatives that stood and spoke were not interested in actually speaking on the content of the bill. They were more concerned with fear-mongering and pushing the stigma that the Democrat Party cares about children more than the Republican Party does. This bill passed the House, 62-36.
House File 2280: “An Act relating to the regulation of firearms and ammunition in a state of public emergency and providing a remedy.”
This bill is fairly simple. It protects the rights of the people to bear arms and not have that right infringed if the government of Iowa was ever tempted to take this freedom away during a state of emergency. Not so surprisingly though, Iowa House Democrats were not fans of protecting the rights of the citizens of Iowa during a state of emergency. During his comments, Representative Bruce Hunter (D-Des Moines) sarcastically stated, “…this is another one of those scare ploys by the NRA: ‘Watch out, or government’s going to grab your guns! It’s never happened, but watch out, it’s gonna happen.’” This bill passed through the House, 67-31.
House File 2279: “An Act relating to possessing and transferring firearm suppressors, providing penalties, and including effective date provisions.”
If you do not understand or know the difference between suppressors and silencers, please read this article by Guns & Ammo-they are not the same thing. This bill seeks to legalize suppressors under strict terms in order to protect hearing of those who shoot loud firearms for sport or hunting. Although a bipartisan suppressor demonstration was held at a local shooting range a few weeks back, many of the Representatives opposing suppressors did not bother to go, so it only makes sense that they would still not grasp what these pieces of equipment do.
You have both ends of the spectrum when it comes to Democrats commenting on this bill. You have those who simply don’t understand, such as Representative Marti Anderson (D-Des Moines), but you also have those who are vehemently opposed to that which they do not understand, such as Representative Ako Abdul-Samad (D-Des Moines). Abdul-Samad stated, “I know that a suppressor does not completely silence the gun, I know there’s still a pop.”
Still a ‘pop’ you say? If Abdul-Samad had done his research, or even listened to his fellow colleagues explain the bill, he would have realized that although suppressors drastically reduce the noise made by the firearm, there is still much more heard than just a ‘pop’. Representative Terry Baxter (R-Garner), who was floor managing this bill, politely answered questions, stating, “There’s no record of a crime ever being committed with a suppressor.” This bill passed the House floor, 74-24.
There were two other noteworthy Second Amendment bills that passed without too much hassle on the House floor: House File 2283 dealing with carrying a loaded weapon on a snowmobile or ATV, and House File 2314 which deals with concealed carry permit reform and personal information protection. Although there were a few civil exchanges, the bulk of comments by House Democrats during Wednesday’s debate left me shaking my head and wishing I could personally explain the Constitution and the Second Amendment to each of them. It also left me with the thought that House Democrats need to learn two simple things: how to debate civilly, and how to focus on the content of the bill, not just their personal or party agendas.