Gun Laws & Legislation

Illinois governor vetoes concealed carry bill

Elizabeth Dorton Contributor
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Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn issued an amendatory veto on a bill that would allow, and regulate, the carrying of concealed weapons in public places.

The state has until July 9 to pass a bill that legalizes the right to carry a firearm, according to a federal court ruling, leaving the legislature with a week to either accept Quinn’s changes and rewrite the bill, or override the veto.

“My foremost duty as Governor is to keep the people of Illinois safe,” Quinn said in a statement. “This is a flawed bill with serious safety problems that must be addressed.”

He implied that the supporters of the bill prefer to serve the National Rifle Association in lieu of the public.

“There are too many provisions in this bill that are inspired by the National Rifle Association, not the common good,” he said. “Public safety should never be compromised or negotiated away, and I urge members to uphold the common sense changes I propose today.”

The U.S. Court of Appeals ruled Dec. 11, 2012 — just three days before the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. — to strike down a previous law banning the concealed carry of weapons in public as against the Second Amendment.

Quinn’s nine amendments to House Bill 183 range from the definition of ‘concealment’ to the number of rounds of ammunition legally allowed.

1. “Mixing alcohol with guns is irresponsible and dangerous.” Quinn added an amendment prohibiting weapons in establishments that serve alcohol.

2. Because the current bill allegedly “infringes on an employer’s ability to enact policies that ensure a safe and secure work environment,” Quinn asserted that “employers should have the right to enact policies that prohibit employees from carrying guns in the workplace.”

3. “In the interest of common sense and the common good,” citizens should only be allowed to carry one handgun accompanied by one ammunition clip which holds no more than ten rounds of ammunition, wrote.

4. Quinn pushed to remove preemption on “assault-weapon” bans, meaning that such weapons could eventually be banned.

5. Rather than weapons being “mostly concealed,” citizens would have to completely conceal their guns.

6. The process of reporting mental health issues must be improved upon, he demanded.

7. The meetings and records of the Concealed Carry Licensing Review Board should be “announced, open, and available to the public,” Quinn wrote.

8. If questioned by a police officer, individuals would have to immediately admit that they are carrying a gun, according to another demand.

9. “As a matter of property rights, the legal presumption should always be that a person is not allowed to carry a concealed, loaded gun onto private property unless given express permission,” the governor wrote.

According to the original text of the bill, it would be legally assumed that citizens were allowed to carry weapons unless a sign prohibited the practice. Should Quinn’s amendments be codified, signs must specifically indicate that concealed weapons are permissible on location.

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Elizabeth Dorton