While I understand why anti-gunners hate preemption, it’s important to understand that we don’t really see much in the way of evidence that preemption makes anyone less safe. What few studies in existence suggesting as much tend to be horribly flawed and not worth the paper they’re printed on, but most of the anti-preemption rhetoric is just typical alarmist BS.
Of course, for a group like Everytown For Gun Safety, alarmist BS is their stock-in-trade.
That’s why they’re now claiming that a preemption bill in Iowa is making people less safe.
In the wake of the Iowa Legislature’s abbreviated 2020 session, a nationwide gun safety advocacy organization launched a digital ad aimed at lawmakers who voted to restrict local governments from enacting gun control measures in their own communities.
House File 2502, awaiting Gov. Kim Reynolds’ signature, prohibits cities and counties from enforcing restrictions that go further than state law on using firearms at shooting ranges and carrying weapons on school grounds, at county courthouses and businesses. The bill states certain restrictions only can be imposed on people seeking to carry firearms into a public building that screens for weapons and has armed guards.
Beginning July 1, the bill prohibits local governments from enacting an ordinance, motion, resolution or amendment to regulate the storage of weapons or ammunition and states that “any individual adversely affected” by a city or county policy regulating firearms “may take legal action to seek damages that have resulted out of the violation.”
Of course, that’s just typical preemption language, the kind that exists in many other states without any kind of issue. After all, preemption creates a uniform level of gun laws, thus preventing someone from becoming a criminal in one town for doing the exact same thing that’s legal in another town. People can keep up with the laws that might impact them much more easily, thus making it easier for them to comply.
However, for Everytown, that’s just not a thing they can accept.
In response, Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund is out with a new ad criticizing lawmakers for passing legislation “that weakens existing gun safety laws.”
Everytown already released two digital ads this year calling on Iowa lawmakers to “pass common-sense gun laws in 2020 or be voted out of office.”
The new ad buy “is the first investment marking Everytown’s commitment to holding Iowa state Republicans accountable at the ballot box this November for failing to act on gun safety during the legislative session,” Everytown said in a press release.
Of course, Iowa went for Trump in 2016 with over 51 percent, which suggests they’re probably wasting their money. Or, more specifically, Michael Bloomberg’s money.
I’m fine with that.
Unfortunately, they’re making up their own facts. The truth is, preemption doesn’t actually stop any gun control from being passed, it merely says it has to come from the state level. A city that feels they need gun control could ask their local representatives in the statehouse to pass something and, in theory, that could be done.
Is it likely to happen? Probably not, but that’s because gun control laws in a single city have an impact on anyone who might pass through that city, and that could be a lot of people. That’s why preemption is a thing in the first place; because cities are far too happy to infringe on people’s civil liberties.
And I’m pretty sure most folks in Iowa understand that quite well.