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Another NRA Defeat: Iowa Moms, Everytown Successfully Defend Handgun Background Checks in Iowa


DES MOINES, IA – The Iowa chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today applauded the defeat of dangerous, gun-lobby-backed bills that would have repealed Iowa’s critical public safety law requiring individuals to first undergo a criminal background check before buying handguns.

Iowa’s current background check system has widespread support. Recent polling reveals an overwhelming majority of Iowa voters–88%–support requiring all gun buyers to pass a criminal background check.


“Today our elected leaders heeded the call of moms across the state and stood up for the safety of all Iowans by rejecting these dangerous bills that would have put us all at risk. Iowa’s handgun background check system is the bedrock of our public safety laws, and now that system can continue to keep our communities safer from gun violence by stopping dangerous people from arming themselves. Maintaining this critical system is a victory for public safety, and Iowa moms will continue to fight for safer gun laws that protect our children and communities.”

Everytown has nearly 30,000 supporters in Iowa. Leading up to the defeat of the handgun background check repeal bills, volunteers from across the state called their legislators, sent emails, and met with lawmakers to urge them to oppose the dangerous bills. In March, the Iowa chapter of Moms Demand Action, along with a broad coalition of gun safety advocates and faith leaders, joined together to deliver letters urging lawmakers to reject the background check repeal bills.

The significant defeat for the NRA comes in the midst of gun lobby legislative losses in state houses across the country. The gun lobby has fallen short on legislative efforts ranging from bills to force guns on campus (Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Montana, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming), to bills that would let people carry hidden, loaded guns in public without a permit (failed to pass in Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and West Virginia).

Additional Information About Background Checks:

  • Background checks keep guns out of the hands of convicted felons, domestic abusers, the seriously mentally ill, and other dangerous people who are prohibited from possessing guns.
  • In states that require criminal background checks on all handgun sales – a group that includes Iowa – women are 46 percent less likely to be shot to death by intimate partners and law enforcement officers are 48 percent less likely to be killed with handguns.
  • Background checks have widespread support in Iowa: Eighty-eight percent of Iowa likely voters believe background checks should be required on all gun sales.