The Land of Lincoln was hit with another gut punch last week as Alan Gottlieb and the Second Amendment Foundation handed down a lawsuit to the Illinois State Police for failure to process Concealed Carry Licenses in violation of state law. This case is known as Luce v Kelly and has been joined by the Illinois State Rifle Association and four private citizens. 
“Illinois was the last state in the country to establish a licensed concealed carry program in the country because we sued them in federal court and won,” SAF found and Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb recalled. “The legislature passed a law requiring the ISP to either approve or deny an application within 90 days if the applicant supplies fingerprints, or 120 days if fingerprints are not submitted.”  
“But the ISP is habitually leaving applicants in legal limbo for months,” he said. “Compounding matters, there has been a surge of CCL applications over the past 12 months. Our plaintiffs have been waiting for months and have received nothing.” 
According to the lawsuit, the individual plaintiffs “are concerned about being able to properly exercise their right to armed self-defense in public, especially given recent events and the current spate of car-jackings that have plagued Chicago and the collar counties.”  
The correlation of the Covid-19 pandemic and civil unrest lead to an unprecedented spike in gun sales in 2020. If that trend in gun sales is followed by the new wave of concealed carry permit holders as we’ve seen consistently happen in the last 20 years, then we’re bound to have a lot more people applying this year for concealed carry licenses. It’s a shame that the citizens of Illinois are bound to such red tape and bureaucracy, but Gottlieb doesn’t plan on stopping the fight any time soon.  
“The State Police cannot justify these delays,” Gottlieb observed. “As it stands, the ISP is indefinitely denying Illinois residents their fundamental Second Amendment right to carry a concealed sidearm in public for personal protection. We’re saying in this lawsuit that if the State of Illinois conditions the exercise of a fundamental right on the receipt of a license, then the ISP needs to comply with state law and process those applications in a timely manner as required by law. We’re taking them to court in an effort to make that happen.” 
The struggle between the citizens of Illinois and the ability to lawfully possess and conceal firearms has been ongoing for years. As noted above, this isn’t Gottlieb’s first time fighting the state of Illinois in court. We documented another one of his legal battles with his client, Rhonda Ezell, to get a firearms range built in the city of Chicago after the city had made it virtually impossible due to zoning sanctions. See her story below.