Iowa RKBA Constitutional Amendment on the Ballot for 2022

Iowa RKBA Constitutional Amendment has good Chance in New Legislature
Iowa RKBA Constitutional Amendment has good Chance in New Legislature

U.S.A.-(–The Great Seal of Iowa boldly states:

We prize our liberties and our rights we will maintain. 

The Iowa Great seal shows a citizen soldier with a musket. In spite of the sentiments on the seal, Iowa is one of only six states where the state constitution does not contain an explicit protection for the right to keep and bear arms. The seal was adopted in 1847. At the time, the right to bear arms was relatively uncontroversial. In the famous Dred Scott decision, Chief Justice Tanney said this, speaking of the rights slaves would have if they were considered to be people:

It would give to persons of the negro race, who were recognised as citizens in any one State of the Union, the right to enter every other State whenever they pleased, singly or in companies, without pass or passport, and without obstruction, to sojourn there as long as they pleased, to go where they pleased at every hour of the day or night without molestation, unless they committed some violation of law for which a white man would be punished; and it would give them the full liberty of speech in public and in private upon all subjects upon which its own citizens might speak; to hold public meetings upon political affairs, and to keep and carry arms wherever they went.

In the last decade, there have been several attempts to add a state constitutional amendment to protect the right to keep and bear arms in Iowa. A Republican representative explained the requirement for the amendment this way:

“We have found that liberal judges are willing to just take away your right to keep and bear arms, the individual right. This is an attempt to do everything we can to make that harder to do,” said Sen. Julian Garrett, R-Indianola.

Here is the text of the proposed amendment:

Right to keep and bear arms. Sec. 1A.
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 path to passing a constitutional amendment in Iowa is long and difficult. Both houses of the legislature must pass the measure with majority votes. Then an election for the legislature must take place. Then both houses must pass the measure, with majority votes, a second time. Then the measure will be put on the ballot for the next election. If a majority of the voters approve it, it will become part of the Iowa Constitution.

Part of the process was for the Secretary of State to publish the proposed amendment after the first passage through the legislature, within a particular time frame. After the amendment passed both houses of the legislature the first time, in 2018, the Secretary of State forgot to publish it. This set back the effort to pass the Amendment for two years.

Since that time, the legislature removed the power of the Secretary of State to, essentially, veto a Constitutional amendment by forgetting to publish it. The amendment was passed again in 2021.  In addition, Iowa joined the Constitutional Carry club on April 2, 2021.

The right to keep and bear arms amendment will be on the ballot in Iowa, for November 8, 2022. From ballotpedia:

A “yes” vote supports adding a right to own and bear firearms to the Iowa Constitution and require strict scrutiny for any alleged violations of the right brought before a court.

A “no” vote opposes adding a right to own and bear firearms to the Iowa Constitution and require strict scrutiny for any alleged violations of the right brought before a court.

The amendment has an excellent chance of being passed by the voters. No right to keep and bear arms  (rkba) amendment has been rejected by voters in the United States. Voters have strengthened RKBA amendments in several other states in the past decades. Wisconsin Constitution’s Section 25 was passed in 1998 with 74% of the vote. Kansas passed an amendment in 2010 with 88% of the vote. Louisiana passed a similar amendment in 2012 with 74% of the vote. Alabama passed a similar amendment in 2014 with 72% of the vote. Missouri passed a strengthened rkba amendment in 2014 with 61% of the vote.

With the Biden administration pushing hard to infringe on RKBA rights nationally, it is likely Iowa voters will follow the motto on their state seal, and vote to maintain their rights.

The other five states which do not have the explicit protection of the right to keep and bear arms in their state constitution are California, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, and New York. No surprise there.


About Dean Weingarten:

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of Constitutional Carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

Dean Weingarten

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Once again, information without action. Would it kill you to include a link to the campaign for donations?


New York is a surprise as it and Virginia refused to ratify the Constitution unless the Second Amendment was added to the Bill of Rights.


A very informative article. What is surprising, why Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Hawaii, which supposedly have 2A built into their state constitutions, do not have “shall issue”, the benchmark (in my view) of civilian firearm freedom.


“shall issue” ? Issue what? Issue recognition of an already existing right?



As a resident of highly restricted New Jersey, for me “shall issue” would be a giant improvement.


I so decree it…

I am spoiled by my very weapons agreeable but still unconstitutional state of Mississippi.



“Any and all restrictions of this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny” This needs to be left out. The only thing that needs to be argued in court about an enumerated right is if another enumerated right says the opposite. Then you can argue which one applies at any given time. Since there are no contrary enumerated rights in the federal constitution that say the right to keep and bear arms shall be infringed, then there is no need for any scrutiny there. The same applies to the Iowa constitution. Further, since the federal constitution holds sway over state… Read more »


I’m glad I’m not the only one who caught that. Seems to me like it’s just some fancy wording to allow for current and future infringement.

Wild Bill

Well, the “Strict Scrutiny” doctrine requires the highest level of examination of a state’s claim that they have an interest that is more important than the people’s Right. The doctrine is only used where the claimed Right is one of the fundamental Rights, and no state, that I am aware of, has overcome the requirement. Sounds good, but at its core, the doctrine still balances peoples Rights against the states’ claimed interests. That is a fallacy because claimed governmental interests could “balance” our Rights down to nothing, and that does not fit constitutional theory. Those God given natural Rights, enshrined… Read more »

Wild Bill

Yes, the notion that a Right is subject to the “interests” of the government allows the government to diminish our Rights … to a nullity. And then our Rights become nothing at all.
Our Rights, enshrined in the BOR, have and must continue to have the power to stop government in its tracks.

I Haz A Question

Regarding CA, our Governor Hair Gel Newsom publicly announced yesterday that he will be signing “a dozen gun control bills into law”. Both he and the Marxist Democrats in Sacramento are going full tilt into positioning themselves (and all of us Californians in the process) as opposite to liberty as possible. Nevermind the fact that most of the State-level gun control laws that have been passed over the past twelve years have been declared and/or enjoined as unconstitutional…the Dems just keep them mired in Appellate Purgatory and throw more spaghetti against the political wall to see how long it’ll stick.… Read more »


Get out while you still can. We need conservatives in states that can still be turned around and saved like Arizona, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Minnesota.


I am in the process of leaving the state of kommiefornia for what I hope to be greener gardens and more freedom in the beautiful state of Michigan. I know they have some issues but hopefully it can be stopped and freedom prevails. California once was but is no more.


Good luck in Mich.


Good move! I grew up in once-beautiful & free Cali and also moving to a swing state that can still be saved.

Our votes are useless in S-hole Calizuela.

Last edited 29 days ago by Russn8r

Good Riddance.


Crybaby Bill’s Oathbreaker posse is out downvoting again.


Add Nevada to that list.

Apple Store is still requiring masks for their employees.