Republican State Senator John O. Jones says he’s “optimistic” that Illinois will issue concealed carry permits. Eventually. Hope springs eternal for the 16-year House and Senate vet. Now that the Supreme Court’s McDonald ruling has deep-sixed Chicago’s handgun ban and incorporated the Second Amendment, Jones will once again introduce legislation to enable concealed carry in the Land of Lincoln. “We’ve tried and tried to convince Chicago legislators that people have the right to bear arms,” Jones told myjournalcourier.com. “The court ruling means we’ve been right all along.” So how many times HAS Jones gone down this road?
“I’ve lost track,” Jones tells TTAG. But he hasn’t forgotten who’s to blame for the impasse. “There are 102 counties in Illinois. Cook County [home to Chicago] is just one of them. They call the shots . . . We can’t let one county dictate gun control legislation for the rest of the state.”
Yes, well, they do. So what’s different now?
“We’ve got this Farm Bureau program where we adopt a legislator from Chicago,” Jones reveals. “We bring them downstate, where they learn milk comes from a cow rather than the store.”
“We take some of them to the shooting range where they see that it’s fun to shoot if you do it right. I think some of them are looking at things a little differently now.”
Yes, well, sixty percent of the Illinois House and Senate representatives hail from Cook county and what are called the “collar” counties (surrounding The Windy City). For concealed carry to make any headway, Jones would have to garner support from the locus of gun control.
McDonald or no, good luck with that. Lest we forget Chicago Aldermen passed Mayor Daley’s gun control package by a vote of 45 to zero. As in none.