Lawmakers hear impassioned pleas on both sides of gun bill

Published: Mar. 15, 2017 at 7:12 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

An Iowa Senate Judiciary Committee heard passionate debate Tuesday regarding a sweeping gun bill that easily passed the House and is now moving through the senate.

Much of the debate centered on the stand-your-ground provision included in the bill that states, in part, that a law-abiding person has no duty to retreat from any place where they can legally be before defending themselves with deadly force.

Those in favor of the provision said it strengthens a basic right of Americans to defend themselves.

"I believe that individuals should have the opportunity to protect themselves regardless of whether they’re in their homes or outside of their homes,” Des Moines resident Lance Shay said.

Those opposed to the provision said the state will be much less safe with people having more freedom to shoot first in any altercation.

"I will tell you that this bill is dangerous,” Cedar Rapids resident Bernard Clayton said. “Essentially what it is is a glorified lynching bill. That's essentially what it is."

Tuesday’s public hearing is the only public on the Senate version of the bill.

After the subcommittee voted 2-1 along party lines to pass the bill onto the committee, Sen. Brad Zaun told KCCI he hopes to get the bill in front of the full judiciary committee on Thursday.