Gun Laws & Legislation

Illinois’ Sweeping Gun Law Is Only 8 Days Old And It’s Already Facing Multiple Lawsuits

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Bronson Winslow Second Amendment & Politics Reporter
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Democratic Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker signed a sweeping gun bill into law eight days ago, and it is already facing multiple lawsuits.

Gun rights advocacy groups, firearms retailers and Illinois residents filed the slew of  lawsuits Wednesday, arguing that the law, which bans so-called “assault weapons” and high capacity magazines, violates the Second, Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the Constitution, further saying that the Illinois legislature failed to properly adopt the law, according to court filings in the Effingham County Circuit Court, Crawford County Circuit Court, and U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois. Democratic Illinois lawmakers passed the law, HB 5471, in early January during the lame duck legislative session, and dozens of sheriffs announced that they would not enforce the “unconstitutional” law.

The first lawsuit, filed on behalf of 860 Effingham County residents and multiple firearm retailers, claims the law violates several constitutional rights, according to the lawsuit. The plaintiffs, represented by attorney Tom DeVore, further argue that the law was not properly adopted, and requested an immediate temporary restraining order. (RELATED: Illinois Gov Signs Sweeping Gun Bill Into Law)

“No longer can the citizens sit idly by while bureaucrats destroy the very foundational fabric of our great Republic. It’s an honor of my lifetime to play a role in representing the People against tyranny,” DeVore said on Twitter Tuesday.

The defendants of the lawsuit are Pritzker, Attorney General Kwame Raoul and other state representatives, according to the lawsuit.

“This law is an important tool in our fight to protect Illinois residents from gun violence, and in the event that a court stays the statute’s effective date pending appellate review, we are committed to pushing for a quick resolution,” Raoul told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

A group of gun rights advocates, to include the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF), Firearm Policy Coalition (FPC) and The Illinois State Rifle Association (ISRA), filed a lawsuit alongside two firearm retailers and one Illinois resident. The lawsuit alleges that the law is unconstitutional and criminalizes “a common and important means of self-defense,” according to a SAF release.

“People who already own such firearms must now register their guns with the State Police. This ban violates the constitutional rights of Illinois gun owners, and we intend to prove it in court.” SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb said in the release.

The defendants of the lawsuit are Raoul, Illinois State Police Director Brendan F. Kelly and two county sheriffs, according to the lawsuit.

Crawford County residents filed the third lawsuit, alleging that the law violates Second amendment rights but also violates the Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination and Fourteenth Amendment rights of equal protection, according to the lawsuit. Attorney Thomas Maag will represent the plaintiffs in the suit.

“My clients want to protect their rights, family rights and friends’ rights, and I think they have a very good case,” Maag said, according to NBC Chicago.

Pritzker and Kelly did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.

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