Illinois passes concealed carry law for state residents

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn

Yesterday, Illinois stood as the only state left in our Republic to forbid the concealed carrying of firearms.  Today, sanity prevailed as the Illinois state House and Senate approved an override to changes made by activist and civilian disarmament supporter Governor Pat Quinn to a bill that authorizes residents to carry [mostly concealed] firearms.

According to the new law, residents of the state may carry weapons with a concealed carry license, which requires a $150 processing fee and 16 hours of firearms training (the highest hours requirement in the nation).  The bill gives state police 6-months to setup a system to process license requests.  Hundreds of thousands of applications are expected in the first year alone.

This bill came as the result of a 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that Illinois’ ban on concealed carry is unconstitutional.  The court gave the state until June 9th (today) to correct the situation.  The bill sat on Governor Quinn’s desk for as long as he could before taking action, and Quinn attempted to gut the legislation this week in an effort to stall its passage even further.

Quinn was unsuccessful.  Quinn, of course, is the Governor of a state that contains a city with one of the highest murder rates in the United States (Chicago).  Before the law, residents could not legally transport weapons without the weapon being unloaded and enclosed in a case.  The state did not issue concealed carry licenses, nor did it honor licenses from other states.  Open carry was also prohibited in most areas (except when hunting or at home).  In other words, state residents were sitting ducks for criminals who do not follow the law and enjoyed a nearly constant advantage over law-abiding citizens in their ability to inflict harm.