IL Gov. Rewrites Anti-Gun Bill, Angers Democrats

The revisions actually expand a proposed 72-hour waiting period for certain gun purchases to all firearms, reinstates death penalty.

Gov. Bruce Rauner of Illinois, who is a Republican, vetoed a bill (HB-1468) which would have mandated a 72-hour waiting period for some semi-automatic firearms and .50 BMG-caliber rifles. This sounds like a good thing at first, but actually, Rauner thinks the bill didn't go far enough.

Currently, the state requires a 24-hour wait on all long guns. Sponsors of the bill argued more time is needed for guns classified as “assault weapons” whatever that means at any given moment.

Rauner wants to recast the bill to include a host of additional measures.

“Gun violence has rocked the nation and our state,” Rauner said in this story on guns.com. “This is a responsible, bipartisan approach to the problem that will help ensure the safety and security of our children, our peacekeepers, our families, and our communities in Illinois.”

His counter-proposal would expand the 72-hour wait to all guns sold in the state, ban bumps stocks and trigger crank devices, and institute a Gun Violence Restraining Order system to seize firearms (temporarily) from those thought to be at risk to themselves or others.

Additionally, Rauner’s proposal would require judges and prosecutors to explain hen plea agreements are negotiated with violent offenders in gun crimes and move to fund additional school resource officers and mental health professionals to tackle violence on campus.

But that’s not all. Another measure Rauner included is riling up Democrats in the state, one that would institute a “death penalty murder” statute under Illinois law that would apply to cop killers and those who kill two or more people.

In 2003, Republican Gov. George Ryan commuted the sentences of all 167 inmates on the state’s death row. Later, Gov. Pat Quinn (D) abolished the practice completely in 2011.

The story says the legality of Rauner’s rewrite is questionable under the state’s constitution, and that it has enough “poison pills” that neither side of the aisle would consider it.

"The governor has prioritized his own politics over saving lives," said State Rep. Jonathan Carroll, one of the authors of the original bill, in this release, "My legislation to create a 72-hour waiting period when purchasing an assault weapon received bipartisan support in the House and Senate. And without any word from the governor, he decided to veto it and change the language putting politics ahead of good policy.

"Even after numerous conversations about the 72-hour waiting period legislation with the governor's chief of staff and the governor's Public Safety Working Group I had no idea as to the governor's intentions. Now I understand that instead of working with me towards a responsible solution for gun safety he's decided to hijack my legislation for his own political gain." You can read the full story from guns.com here.