We’ve been wondering when something like this would happen. Possibly taking their cue from California’s determination to flout federal immigration laws, Effingham County, Illinois, a downstate area of about 35,000 people an hour east of St. Louis, has declared that they won’t cooperate with the Chicago-dominated state legislature’s moves to restrict Second Amendment Rights.
Declaring Effingham County a sanctuary for gun owners, the county board on Monday directed its employees not to enforce any new Illinois law that would “unconstitutionally restrict the Second Amendment.”
The action is largely symbolic, according to Effingham County State’s Attorney Bryan Kibler. He said the resolution, adopted by an 8-1 vote, will not control the decision making in the sheriff’s office.
For his part, the Sheriff said he’d consult and an attorney before going against state law.
Sheriff Dave Mahon agreed that it was a county board decision and would not control his office.
Mahon said that if such a potentially unconstitutional law were to be passed by the state, he would consult with the state’s attorney and the legal counsel of the Illinois Sheriff’s Association before deciding what actions to take.
Not everyone was on board with the move.
The meeting was one of the most attended for the board this term, with about 70 people present. Five people spoke to the board on the issue, three of them opposed in particular to the sanctuary county provision.
Dan Niebrugge, a pediatric physician, said his pride in Effingham’s contributions turned to embarrassment when he heard the county was considering “sanctuary” status for gun owners.
Mike Sehy said he was concerned that this would encourage people with assault-style weapons to move to the area.
We’d guess there are already a lot of AR owners in Effingham county. And probably a few that are Mr. Sehy’s neighbors.
You can read a rundown of gun control bills that are currently moving through the Illinois legislature or already on Governor Bruce Rauner’s desk here. No wonder they’re riled up in Effingham County.