When I heard about the latest attempt at a concealed carry bill to bubble up in the Illinois legislature this afternoon (the 396th attempt, I think) I went to someone who I knew would be plugged into the situation: John Boch of Guns Save Life. And what do you know…he’d just put his thoughts up at gunssavelife.com:
“Here’s the situation. There is no June 9th cliff. We don’t have enough votes willing to go over the cliff. We do have the latest bill submitted by Brandon Phelps. Put your drink down and take a deep breath. In fact, you might want to pour yourself about three fingers of your favorite beverage and get a good start on it before reading further. I’ll wait . . .
You’re back. Good. Here’s where we are:
The Speaker of the House has blessed this latest submission by Brandon Phelps for the People of the State of Illinois.
I haven’t even read it carefully yet, but from what I’ve seen it sucks. In fact, I believe I expressed an expletive or three upon scanning it. A $150 application fee – $300 for non-residents. Sixteen hours of training. Class B misdemeanors for prohibited locations first time. Goofy panels. An even LONGER list of prohibited locations.
However . . . It also has across the board pre-emption on all local firearm regulations and restrictions.
Chicago’s gun registration regime? Gone.
Chicago’s ban on mags, lasers, etc.? Buh bye.
Cook County’s black gun ban? History.
Local “safe storage” ordinances? Into the dustbin of history.
It also means we only need a simple majority to tweak it in coming years, not a 3/5ths majority.Why am I writing like I’m trying to sell you this fecal sandwich? Because the alternative, as one downstate Democrat described it to me, was a combination of the House Bill that Chicago introduced that got a whopping 31 votes and Kwame’s proposal in the Senate that hasn’t gotten any votes yet, but is may issue without any sort of pre-emption.
In short, the Speaker offered this proposal that Brandon is offering as an effort to split the baby. On one side he had downstate Democrats saying they are getting pounded by constituents for a shall-issue right-to-carry bill. On the other side, he’s got Rahm and the Chicago Democrats throwing everything and the kitchen sink into the legislature to pass gun control like we’ve never seen.
Madigan knows if either side gets a clean win, it’ll be a bloodbath either in Chicago or downstate. So he’s splitting the baby. He’s giving some red-meat to downstate voters to salvage some downstate Democrats their jobs in part because of some very unpopular votes to come (can you say gay marriage and so-called “medical” marijuana).
And he’s giving Chicago Democrats some of what they wanted in terms of no guns in parks, public transportation and a host of other prohibited locations.
“What if we decline?” I asked one source. He didn’t laugh. He was dead serious.
If we decline his offer, he’s going to stuff a may issue law up our rear ends, without any lube, and move on. He’s done “playing around” on the issue and will let the chips fall where they may as there are bigger issues in Illinois (see above list).
So, folks, that’s where we are. There’s no cliff. Too many politicians have gone squishy and don’t want to run over it. It’s this or another ten years of legal wrangling to undo
whatever else we can get done here and now. And the bright spot is we will only need 60 votes to tweak this in the future if the governor’s copacetic.
Didn’t we get screwed once before? Yes, we did. Again, the Speaker (not sure why I’m capitalizing as he doesn’t deserve the respect) has blessed this “compromise” and told the Democratic caucus that he plans on moving it forward and expects to it to pass. Madigan also expects the Governor will veto the bill and he’s planning on over-riding that veto.
There you go.”