Democratic Sit-In Sparks Conversation at Iowa Statehouse

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- A "sit-in" inside the House of Representatives lasted more than a day in Washington, but it’s over, for now.

House Democrats were demanding votes on legislation to prevent terror suspects from buying guns and expanding background checks.

Thursday morning, the House adjourned until after the Fourth of July holiday.

The sit-in sparked conversation nationally and locally.

State Senator Matt McCoy, a Democrat from Polk County, said that minority parties in the statehouse around the country could begin to use similar strategies.

“I think it’s a model for how you enact change and ultimately it’s a form of protest, it’s peaceful it’s a way of saying we will not be silent, we’re going to speak out, we’re going to change the way we’ve done business in the past and I think it could end up in our state houses around the country,” said McCoy.

The prospect of sit-ins becoming the norm for deadlocked government around the country isn’t pleasing voters, who say they sympathize with the desire to bring minority votes to the floor but wish there were a better way to accomplish it.

“I hope that no, the answer that there becomes a mechanism for compromise, for both the Republicans and Democrats to at least have votes, at least have them go on the record as, ‘I’m for our against this’ and have them take that back to their home district to run for it,” said R.J. Lemus, a voter.

There may be a chance for something along these lines to happen here in Iowa, McCoy will introduce a bill next session that would ban assault weapons in Iowa and extend background checks on those looking to purchase a firearm.

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