I Voted Yes on the 2nd Amendment

I’ve gotten all sorts of emails from folks all over Iowa asking me to help add a “2nd Amendment” to the Iowa Constitution, because right now, it’s not in there.  And I am in full agreement with the 2nd Amendment, and I would like to see it in the Iowa Constitution,  so I was happy and proud to be able to vote YES on  House Joint Resolution 2009 when it ran in the House Public Safety Committee — it basically allows an amendment to be added to the Iowa Constitution almost identical in wording to the 2nd Amendment. So Iowa would have a “2nd Amendment” of our own in our state constitution. That’s a good thing.

But…. tonight the full House is voting on HJR 2009, and while I’m sure that all of us would vote yes on the bill in its current form, unfortunately some legislators are attempting to change the bill in such a way that if the constitutional amendment proposed in their version eventually became law, it would arguably make almost any type of restrictions on firearms unconstitutional …. no one could be required to obtain hunting licenses, and people could carry their firearms wherever they wanted, concealed or not, without a permit; and it’s questionable whether people could still be charged with crimes involving firearms. 

That’s not what the federal constitution’s 2nd amendment was intended to do, and if the proposed amendment did somehow become part of our state constitution, it would make Iowa a more dangerous state to live in.  And if HJR 2009 goes over to the Senate in the extreme, unreasonable form being proposed by some House members, instead of in the more reasonable form in which it was passed out of the Public Safety committee, the Senate will kill the bill. Period.  Because some people decided that if they can’t have everything they want, they’d rather have nothing at all. Which is fine, but make no mistake — I voted to put the 2nd Amendment into the Iowa Constitution once, and I’d do it again, but apparently I’m not going to have that chance, and neither will the people of Iowa, because some people don’t understand the  meaning of compromise.

Advertisements

About Representative Mary Wolfe

Part time attorney; full time State Representative for Iowa House District 98 (East Clinton County)
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to I Voted Yes on the 2nd Amendment

  1. Raybe1 says:

    Thank you for your support on this bill.

  2. Mary hopefully some of you on the hill have been watching as many of us have the poor IRS employee who was rammed while pulling into his apartment complex by 3 drunk men.

    He is heard on the 911 tape “thank god he called law or under current law” he would be in prison! Our current county attorney even after hearing the 911 recording choose to prosecute and make him set i n JAIL!

    He WAS AN X LAW OFFICER WHO WOULD HAVE HAD A JUSTIFIABLE SHOOTING UNDER SAME EXAMPLE, yet HE CLAIMS BECAUSE HE IS BLACK HE WAS STUCK IN JAIL

    COULD NOT AFFORD BOND THE APARTMENT ILLEGALLY EVICTED HIM i HOPE HE SUES THE CRAP OUT OF THE APARTMENT COMPLEX AS WELL AS THE ATTORNEY WHO SIGNED HE WAS SERVED SO A JUDGE WOULD ORDER THE EVICTION. after THE SHERIFF SET ALL HIS WORLDLY BELONGINGS ON THE STREET EXCEPT HIS GUNS AND A MACHETE HE EVEN CALLED THE JAIL TO SEE IF HE HAD ANY RELATIVES WHO COULD COME NOW AND COLLECT HIS BELONGINGS, PROOF EVERYONE KNEW HE WAS IN JAIL AND NO ONE SERVED HIM NOTICE UNTIL AFTER HIS BELONGINGS WERE ON THE CURB.

    Then the night after the jury takes less than 2 hours to find him innocent stating the 911 tape was clear that he had warned the 2 men twice and was totally justified. If our county attorney can be this viscus with current law, and had this innocent man not called and had the whole process on tape he would be in prison under current law

    That is not how I read the 2nd amendment when I went to school!

    We the people need the right to protect our self’s, our family, our belongings without threat of prosecution!

    Look at how broke and desperate many people are with loosing there homes and jobs and now with current budget cuts cutting 8 deputy sheriffs and 2 dispatchers in Polk county where I live, you better believe I am ready to protect my family here at home or on the roads here, I likely will be dead 30 minutes later when our law finally shows up!

    We need Democrats on the hill to show up daily and stay at work!

    We need laws that protect the average guy also, not just those who can pay a lobbyist in Iowa!

    We need the real issues JOBS, BUDGET CUTS, CLEAR BUDGETS, OPEN MEETINGS FIXED!

    • wolfelaw says:

      Steve, I agree that what happened to Mr. Lewis was an injustice — but I think that a big part of the injustice in his case had to do w/the fact that Mr. Lewis was a black man with a gun — our criminal justice system historically treats black men charged w/gun offenses waaay more harshly than non-black men charged w/gun crimes — the prison stats are crazy disproportionate. And as far as protecting yourself/family in your home, the law is clear that you can use deadly force, and there is no need to retreat. As for any place else, you can use deadly force if it is reasonable. And yes, Mr. Lewis was clearly being reasonable, and shouldn’t have been charged — but there are all sorts of people charged with crimes who are later found not guilty, not to mention all sorts of people sitting in prison serving time for crimes they didn’t commit. Which is not good, and problems w/lack of fairness/justice in the criminal justice system need to be addressed, but making it much more difficult to convict anyone of theft, or rape, or assault, or whatever by drastically changing the law is probably not the way to address those problems, and making it much more difficult to convict anyone of murder does not seem to me like the best way to address what happened to Mr. Lewis. But I do hear you, and I especially appreciate your suggestion that we concentrate on addressing issues that impact Iowans on a day to day basis, like the lack of decent jobs, and the tension between cutting commercial property taxes/ensuring that counties have enough money to fund necessary services.

  3. Michael Ware says:

    Representative Wolfe,

    You don’t appear to fully grasp the actual issue here. You’re not elected to office so you may grant citizens’ rights. Citizens hold rights here in America by virtue of birth. Beyond being a legal U.S. citizen and proud American, the act to remain living supersedes my country and is granted by the Almighty.

    The above is the premise of this ‘debate’ and no reasonable person would argue this.

    To accept the reality that DC v Heller was a Supreme Court decision in which four of the nine justices didn’t agree that Heller was granted a literal right to “KEEP” and “BEAR” arms, why would you even consider implementing the same language into Iowa Constitution knowing it has been narrowly accepted by the Judiciary?

    It is incumbent on you to realize the need to put into State Constitution the narrative that sets a background for which Iowans could eventually be judged. Anything less would criminal.

    That is the difference between wording we see barely working on the Federal level by appointed politicians with stated and public agendas as compared to the language Iowans deserve and have obviously earned by their demonstrated continual responsibility.

    If somehow Iowans have a universal character flaw or irregular DNA code that makes them less worthy of concrete nomenclature in State Constitution, this vote is the first I’m learning of it…

    I look forward to you honoring Iowans with your support of the Rights given by God and upheld as American citizens. You have the opportunity to insure this for Iowans with strict and concrete language. No other action is fitting.

    Regards,

    Michael Ware

    • wolfelaw says:

      Michael: I grasp your point, I just don’t agree with your contention. I voted to amend the Iowa Constitution to include a provision protecting Iowans’ 2nd Amendment right to bear arms. That’s the bill we passed out of Public Safety w/bipartisan suport — and it’s the bill that we could have passed out of the House with bi-partisan support, and the Senate would then have had little choice but to do the same (because who could refuse to vote for the 2nd Amendment?). But the amended bill that the House passed last night is simply not going to fly in the Senate — it is DOA. And everyone knows it, and everyone knew it when we voted on it.

      I get that you’d prefer the IA constitution to contain the detailed “concrete nomenclature” included in Rep. Windschitl’s bill, but guess what — that’s not going to happen. But our constitution could contain a 2nd amendment provision explicitly protecting the right to bear arms. And it seems to me that part of representing ones’ constituents is to try and actually accomplish something of substance, even if that “something” isn’t in the ideal form one would prefer, or everything one wanted. If the Rs had been willing to compromise, Iowa would be a big step closer to having a right to bear arms provision in our constitution. Instead, Rep. Windschitl and company insisted on amending the bi-partisan version of the bill back to the original version, which the Senate will not run — so he might have won the battle, but in doing so he guaranteed that the people of Iowa are right back to square one as far as a constitutional right to bear arms is concerned.

      So bottom line — I voted yes on the 2nd Amendment, and everyone in my caucus would have voted yes on the 2nd Amendent, and everyone in the Senate would no doubt have voted yes on the 2nd Amendment — so imo it is crystal clear that the reason this bill is now dead (and it is) is because the 2nd Amendment just wasn’t good enough for a relatively small group of people. Which is too bad for Iowa, and I sincerely hope that next year Rep. Windschitl will be willing to work together in a bi-partisan manner to pass a 2nd amendment bill out of the House that the Senate will pass as well.

      • Michael Ware says:

        Representative Wolfe,

        I’m troubled by your response. I’ll be honest when I state that I’m quite conservative on many notions. However, this is an issue solely based on my expectation to remain living, and/or my choice to do so.

        To put this into a partisan light is inappropriate. Do Democrats somehow have less to live for? I can’t imagine a world, let alone an America, where we take party lines when the core of our lives is on the line. These freedoms “SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED” and this is pretty easy to understand and accept. I wish these things for you and your family, so I’m wondering why my life and my family’s is worth any less.

        If we move past the debate between you and I, there is the fact the Senate is quite capable of amending the constitutional provision, and sending it back to the House. Why are we making the assumption this piece of vital legislation is DOA? After all, Senator Gronsal, himself, introduced SF2379 that became the Shall Issue law here in Iowa.

        The party line rhetoric is beneath us both, and frankly dishonors Iowans. Why don’t you lead and rise above this instead of providing a list of reasons why something can’t happen?

        -Michael

      • wolfelaw says:

        Mike:

        The constitutional amendment bill came out of Public Safety with almost unanimous bi-partisan support, and I am sure that everyone in the House, from both parties, would have voted yes on it if it had remained in that form. Unfortunately, it was amended in a way that turned it into a partisan bill with little chance of moving forward in the Senate. The legislators who amended the bill knew that by doing so, the bill would no longer have bi-partisan support, and would no longer have any chance of being passed in the Senate, and chose to amend the bill anyhow. So I just don’t agree with your allegation that I’m the one playing partisan politics. I support the 2nd amendment, want to see it in the IA Constitution, worked with legislators from both parties to try and make that happen, and I’m upset that because some people weren’t willing to compromise, we’ll need to start over from ground zero next year. Which we will, and hopefully folks will realize that in politics, taking the “all or nothing” position often results in nothing getting accomplished.

        Mary

  4. David Speakman says:

    I read all the comments and responses with interest, but am left with a question. Why do we need a “2nd Amendment” in our Iowa Constitution when it is very much in the National Constitution and applies to all the states? It seems like a lot of work for no apparent benefit.

So what do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s