By Julia Shanahan
The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act allows someone with a license for concealed-carry in one state may do so in others as well.
The bill passed the House of Representatives on a bipartisan vote Dec. 6. It also has a proposal to fix the background-check system.
According to statistics from Guns to Carry, Iowa residents have 273,852 active permits cumulatively. There has been, according to that same survey, a 256 percent increase in permits in the U.S. since 2000, and there are currently 14 permitless carry states.
In 2016, there were 27.5 million background checks reported through the check system. From January to August this year, there were only 16.3 million, the lowest number since 2011.
In a press call with Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, he said that the only places that the new gun law would affect would be states that have stricter gun laws, because now more people are legally allowed to carry in their state. He said that this law should not affect the current background-check system.
“The person traveling through [a] state would be legal … but it wouldn’t have anything to do with background check because he wouldn’t even have the gun in the first place,” Grassley said.
Grassley compared this logic with the shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas. He said that the major problem is that people with felony charges, domestic abuse, and mental-health issues aren’t being reported to the check system, similar to the Texas shooter.
“If he had a right to carry into another state, that wouldn’t be good,” Grassley said.
Katie Albrecht, a volunteer chapter leader for the Iowa’s Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America chapter, said the bill is making it so a state with stricter gun-regulation laws has to accept the laws of any other state.
Albrecht said this was a bill that was voted on in 2011 and received 118 votes and that just a few weeks ago the margin was 33.
“We feel really good about our voices being heard,” Albrecht said.
Moms Demand Action supports Second Amendment rights but believes one can support the Second Amendment while keeping the community safe.
“Concealed-carry is certainly a bill that will weaken our state gun laws, and that it is absolutely something that is keeping our community less safe,” Albrecht said.
According to data from Everytown for Gun Safety, 31 states and Washington require training for a person to carry concealed guns in public. Under the House bill, those people could acquire permits from states with minimal gun-regulation laws and be able to conceal-carry in any state.
UI student Reece Callaway, a staunch supporter of the Second Amendment, said he doesn’t see the legislation having a huge effect on campus, because the UI prohibits any form of concealed-carry. But, he said, that if they were to adapt those laws, then the laws to carry would have to be much stricter.
“I don’t think it will make a difference, but I definitely think it will set people off,” Callaway said.