The Illinois House on Friday approved legislation that would let Illinoisans carry concealed firearms. It passed on a vote of 85 to 30 after more than two hours of debate.
“As we all know, after years of debating this issue, it is incredibly difficult, if not darn-near impossible, to come to a middle ground on this issue,” said the bill’s sponsor, Representative Brandon Phelps (D-Harrisburg).
“Every legislator on this floor has a different opinion when it comes to concealed-carry policy.”
In order to appeal to lawmakers who favor tighter gun-control laws, the bill would prohibit people from carrying weapons in places such as schools, sports arenas, and bars, and on public transportation.
But the legislation would also wipe away local gun ordinances, such as Cook County's ban on assault weapons and its new $25 sales tax on guns.
Spokeswomen for both Governor Pat Quinn and Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) said they oppose the legislation. They called it an "overreach" that was written for the NRA.
A federal court has given Illinois has until June 9 to pass some sort of law allowing people to carry guns in public.