WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Assault Weapons Ban Added to Ammo Law

Jul 31, 2012

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn is aiming to implement an assault weapons ban for the state.

Quinn has talked about the issue since the massacre in a Colorado movie theater. He spotted an opening in legislation (SB 681) that would have allowed people to buy ammunition by mail from companies within the state (it's already legal to mail-order ammo from out of state).

Quinn used his Constitutional powers to rewrite the legislation so it would ban UZIs, AK-47s, and many other types of firearms.

But standing in the way of Quinn's proposal is State Senator Dave Leuchtefeld (R-Okawville). He sponsored the original measure -- dealing with buying ammunition by mail -- which means he gets to decide whether to call Quinn's version for a vote.

"As a lot of things that happen in Springfield, it is strictly political," Leuchtefeld said. "The governor wants to be out there saying, 'I'm going to do something about this.' It's a popular thing to say right now because of what happened in Colorado."

Leuchtefeld said he won't support Quinn's weapons ban. He will instead try to restore his original ammunition bill, which passed with broad, bipartisan majorities during this year's legislative session.

One of those supporters is State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville). In a written statement he said, "This is a blatant overstep by the Governor. By completely changing the purpose of this legislation, Governor Quinn is not only attacking Illinois gun owners, he’s attacking Illinois businesses too."

Thanks to Illinois Public Radio