Illinois State Rifle Association criticizes proposed gun control measures

(The Center Square) – Firearm advocacy groups and Illinois GOP lawmakers are speaking out against legislation that they say will infringe upon Illinoisans’ Second Amendment rights.  

House Bill 5855, filed by state Rep. Bob Morgan, D-Deerfield, aims to prohibit individuals from purchasing semi-automatic weapons in Illinois. It also increases the length of restraining orders and sets up age restrictions for applying for a Firearm Owner’s Identification card.

The measure would also ban manufacturing, delivering, selling, purchasing, and possession of any magazine that can hold more than 10 rounds. Anyone with a magazine over 10 rounds would be committing a felony, if the measure passes and is approved by the governor.  

Illinois State Rifle Association Executive Director Richard Pearson told The Center Square that Illinois needs to do a better job enforcing its current laws to avoid events like the suburban Highland Park mass shooting where seven people were killed and dozens injured during a July 4 parade.  

“The police knew the shooter was a problem, and they did nothing,” Pearson said. “We have red flag laws. We have clear and present danger laws, both of which should have been implemented, and this guy would have never gotten a FOID card.” 

The ISRA said it would challenge the measure in court if it passed, as other gun rights have said. 

“The Illinois State Rifle Association will not be entering into any negotiations on this piece of legislation,” the group said in a statement. “Elections have consequences. We will see the State of Illinois in court should this bill be enacted into law.” 

The Illinois Freedom Caucus, made up of Republican state lawmakers, also released a statement saying more gun laws do not stop mass shootings. 

“There is universal agreement that mass shootings are evil and wrong. The disagreement comes in how to deal with the problem. For some, the path to stopping mass shootings is to strip honest citizens of their 2nd Amendment rights,” the group said in a news release. “Between federal, state, and local governments, our nation has in excess of more than 20,000 gun laws. If enacting more laws were the solution, the problem would have been solved long ago.”  

Morgan says he wants to get the bill passed during lame duck session in early January, when just a simple majority of “yes” votes is needed to have the legislation take effect immediately. 

“I think we’re going to have a robust conversation in the coming weeks to get some good feedback on it, but I’m going to work as hard as I possibly can to pass these laws to make sure that no other community goes through what we have here in Highland Park,” he said.


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December 9, 2022 at 12:13PM

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