The U.S. Constitution makes it a right for an individual to bear weapons, but it is couched with ambiguous language that has prompted debate among historians and legal experts alike.
Iowa’s new constitutional amendment eliminates that ambiguity. It's language somewhat resembles the Second Amendment but does not include phrasing such as "well-regulated militia."
Voters overwhelmingly accepted a ballot proposal that makes possessing a weapon a right.
“The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. The sovereign state of Iowa affirms and recognizes this right to be a fundamental individual right. Any and all restrictions of this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny,” the amendment reads.
According to the Rand Corporation, Iowa ranks No. 33 in the U.S. for gun ownership rates. It estimates there are 436 firearms for every 1,000 Iowans.
Iowa has many gun laws on the books, including a prohibition of firearms on college campuses, a minimum age of 21 to purchase a gun and a safe storage requirement, according to Everytown for Gun Safety.
The Iowa Firearms Coalition called the issue a big win for gun supporters.