by Doug Book, Editor
If Illinois lawmakers cannot pass a concealed carry law acceptable to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals by June 9th, the constitutionally prescribed right to keep and bear arms will immediately take effect in the Prairie State. That is, just as codified in the 2nd Amendment, all Illinois gun owners will have the right to bear a weapon, anywhere they wish in the state. (1)
On December 11th of last year, a 3 judge panel from the 7th Circuit ruled Illinois’ near total ban on the carry of firearms unconstitutional. The 47 page decision in Moore v Madigan gave the Illinois legislature 180 days to craft legislation “…consistent with the public safety and the Second Amendment as interpreted in this opinion…” (2)
Last week the Illinois House voted 85-30 in favor of a new concealed carry statute which would institute both a “shall issue” provision and statewide preemption for the first time. Under the terms of the statute, the state would be required to issue a concealed carry license to any Illinois resident who completes a mandatory training program and pays a $150 tax. In addition, the new law would take precedence over any local regulations. For example, the statute passed by the City of Chicago banning “assault weapons” would bow to statewide rules. (3)
Though one would hardly realize it from the state’s record of vehemently anti-gun rights legislation, the vast majority of Illinois is very pro-gun! Yet just as Chicago liberals have spent decades forcing their brand of anti-second Amendment lunacy on the rest of the state, on Tuesday the Chicago-dominated, Senate Executive Committee voted down the House bill, demanding all anti-gun regulations of the Windy City and other localities remain part of any new legislation. The Chicago clan also want to incorporate strict mental health review provisions along with a mandatory 16 hour training program in any new law.
Will members of the Illinois House and Senate get together on constitutional, concealed carry legislation which will win the blessing of fiercely, anti-gun Governor Pat Quinn prior to the court imposed, June 9th deadline? If a new law has not been fashioned, the State of Illinois could be subject to the United States Constitution for the first time in decades!
“Nobody wants us to not do anything and the federal court ruling take effect and thereby allow ‘constitutional carry,” said Democrat State Sen John Sullivan. (4) A predictable statement from a typical Democrat. Indeed, what a frightening thought for Illinois’ ruling Democrat Party—constitutional rights in the form of the 2nd Amendment actually being granted residents of a state whose lawmakers have so fervently ignored the document for such a very long time!
Should Democrats fail to resolve their differences it will be very interesting to see just how many folks in Illinois strap on pistols on June 10th —concealed or otherwise—in response to their new-found rights.