Are Lame Duck Lawmakers in Illinois Pushing for a Comprehensive Gun Ban?

The NRA-ILA and the Illinois State Rifle Association sent out alerts this week saying that Illinois State Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) is angling to push through a comprehensive gun ban before the 2013 legislative session begins on Jan. 9.

The NRA-ILA warned:

The NRA-ILA has just learned that anti-gun legislators backed by Governor Quinn are deceptively trying to sneak through a new draconian gun ban as early as Wednesday while the legislature convenes for the Lame Duck Session from January 2 to 9.

You voted many of these anti-gun legislators out of office, and now, in their last days as lawmakers, they want to quietly trample on the rights of all law-abiding gun owners in Illinois.

And ISRA added:

Cullerton hopes to ramrod the bill through and get it to Governor Quinn for signature by Friday.  If he is successful at doing so, nearly every gun you currently own will be banned and will be subject to confiscation by the Illinois State Police.

Based on what we know about Cullerton’s bill, firearms that would be banned include all semiautomatic rifles, pistols, and shotguns.  Pump action shotguns would be banned as well.  This would be a very comprehensive ban that would include not only so-called “assault weapons” but also such classics as M1 Garands and 1911-based pistols.  There would be no exemptions and no grandfathering.  You would have a very short window to turn in your guns to the State Police to avoid prosecution.

Thus far (at the time of writing this) there’s been little movement on this front, but it stands to reason that some kind of gun control bill or amendment (to another bill) will be proposed over the course of the next week.

As mentioned, the gun ban will have the full support of Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn, who is a major proponent of gun control reform in the Land of Lincoln.

In August of last year, Quinn used his amendatory veto powers to gut a moderately pro-gun piece of legislation and turn it into a ban on semiautomatic rifles, high capacity magazines and .50 caliber rifles.

At the time, Quinn justified his actions by referencing the movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, saying, “Proliferation of military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines undermines public safety and the right of personal security of every citizen.”

“There is no place in the state of Illinois for weapons designed to rapidly fire at human targets at close range,” Quinn added.

Fortunately, in late November, the state Senate overwhelmingly rejected Quinn’s Assault Weapons Ban by a vote of 49-4.

Given this fact, that the vote for Quinn’s modified bill was after the Nov. elections and lawmakers already knew their fate (whether or not they would be returning in 2013) gun owners should feel a little better about the chance of a comprehensive gun ban actually passing – meaning, it’s not all that likely.

Nevertheless, we can’t rest on our laurels nor can we trust politicians to remember their values when it comes time to vote on another AWB.   As such, here is what we need to do, according to the ISRA:

1.   Beginning Wednesday, call your State Senator and politely tell him or her that you are a law abiding firearm owner and that you strongly oppose Cullerton’s gun ban.  Also, be sure to call your State Representative as well and politely deliver the same message.  If you do not know who your State Representative please call the Illinois State Board of Elections at 217-782-4141.

2.   Forward this alert to all your gun owning friends and family members.  Be sure to tell them to call their senators and representatives as well.

3.   Post this alert to any and all Internet bulletin boards and blogs to which you belong.

4.   Join or renew your membership in the ISRA.  Encourage your friends and family to join as well.

5.   Make a generous donation to the ISRA.  We are in desperate need of your financial support to help beat back the onslaught of gun grab bills coming our way in 2013.

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