Mayor Rahm Emanuel today indicated he will put forward his own city gun control ordinance in the next few days after state lawmakers did not reach agreement on the divisive issue.
Emanuel refused to give details about what specifically his proposal will address. But he said he isn’t willing to wait until state lawmakers take up gun control. Last month, a federal appeals court tossed out the state’s longstanding ban on carrying concealed guns in public. The court gave the state six months to set up new rules.
During his remarks today, Emanuel hit on several of the firearms regulations he has said he would like to see in place at the state level since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Connecticut.
“Waiting is not a strong suit of mine,” Emanuel said when asked today about the General Assembly’s failure to pass a proposed state ban on assault weapons. “First of all, I believe there’s, I know there’s a majority in the state, an overwhelming majority in the city for a ban on assault weapons, clips, and comprehensive background checks on all sales, wherever they take place, wherever the location may be. And there’s also a majority in the legislature.” […]
Emanuel also has spoken in recent weeks about the need for laws requiring people to report if their guns are lost or stolen.
* More from the Sun-Times…
The mayor’s new gun ordinance is likely to focus on the wish list that Police Supt. Garry McCarthy unveiled at an anti-gun rally last week that included parents whose children were innocent victims of gun violence.
McCarthy argued then that his officers would continue “drinking from a fire hose” until Illinois: bans assault weapons and high-capacity magazines; requires gun owners to report lost, stolen or transferred firearms; mandates criminal background checks before every single gun sale and imposes mandatory minimum penalties “sufficient to deter people” from carrying illegal firearms.
“We need those five things. Not just assault weapons. Not just high-capacity magazines. We need all of it,” McCarthy said on that day.
Noting that Chicago Police recover nine guns for every one recovered in Los Angeles, he said, “That’s insanity, folks.”
While the mayor was talking tough on guns, the City Council’s Public Safety Committee was relaxing city regulations on shooting ranges in Chicago that are the subject of yet another pending court challenge.
Ald. Pat O’Connor (40th), the mayor’s City Council floor leader, acknowledged that whatever Emanuel does locally is certain to end up court. That’s why the mayor’s legal brain trust has been scouring recent court rulings across the country on the subject.
“It’s the art of going to the end without going over the edge. … It’s nuanced pretty well. There are significant enough changes,” O’Connor said, careful not to spill the beans.
“We believe, based upon what we’ve done and researched, that the ordinance will stand [legal] muster. Obviously, if the state and federal government were to step into this in a big way, they could save a lot of time and energy that municipalities spend trying to do what states and the federal government have been unwilling to do.”
Emanuel will likely unveil his plan Monday morning during a Center for American Progress Action Fund event with Representative Mike Thompson (D-CA) and Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on gun control. You’ll be able to watch that live by clicking here.
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