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Kelly demands Halvorson and Hutchinson release NRA questionnaires

Monday, Jan 28, 2013

* From a press release…

Robin Kelly, candidate for Illinois’ second Congressional district, today called on her opponents, former Congresswoman Debbie Halvorson and State Senator Toi Hutchinson, to publically release their National Rifle Association questionnaires they filled out in previous elections.

“I am calling on my opponents to release their previous NRA questionnaires so that the people of the second Congressional district know what promises they have made to the NRA, and how they earned their ‘A’ ratings,” Robin Kelly said. “I earned a lifetime ‘F’ rating from the NRA and I could not be more proud of that fact. The voters deserve to know how Toi and Debbie both earned ‘A’s’ from the pro-gun lobby, which is notoriously known for only issuing ‘A’s’ to its very strongest supporters.”

“It is a tragedy that we have lost so many lives in Chicago and the Southland to gun violence, including losing seven lives this Saturday alone. We have to stop the violence and get the guns off the streets. I am the only candidate in the race with the record of fighting against gun violence. I am ready to work with President Obama to take on the NRA and protect our communities.”

Robin Kelly is the only candidate in the race to issue a five-point pledge to combat gun violence and has earned an ‘F’ rating with the NRA. Both Debbie Halvorson and Toi Hutchinson scored high ratings with the NRA in previous elections, but have yet to release the candidate questionnaires that earned them high ratings from the pro-gun group.

* The gun issue was highlighted in today’s Tribune

Debbie Halvorson found herself alone among leading Democratic candidates Sunday when she indicated she would not support a ban on the semi-automatic firearm used in the Sandy Hook school shooting last month. […]

“We’ve buried far too many of our own children over the years — every day. When are we going to go after the criminals? When are we going to go after the people who buy guns for those who aren’t able to go get their backgrounds checked? We need to strengthen the laws we already have instead of keep talking about new ones,” Halvorson said at the forum at Trinity United Church of Christ, 400 W. 95th St.

“We need to do more about the criminals. Cook County has an assault weapons ban. We have the highest amount of murders in the country. Let’s do more about enforcing the laws we have at the same time doing more about keeping our streets safe,” she said, adding she backs a universal background check and tougher criminal penalties on straw purchasers. […]

State Sen. Toi Hutchinson, of Olympia Fields, who replaced Halvorson in the state Senate, also has had NRA backing in the past. Hutchinson, who did not attend the forum, has embraced Obama’s call for tougher gun measures and co-sponsored a bill in Springfield to ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.

* Politico also had a story

Now, black leaders — concerned about Halvorson’s position atop polls — say they’re prepared to make gun control the central issue in the contest. The goal is to paint her as an NRA ally who’s too conservative for the seat and insensitive to Chicago’s rising tide of gun violence.

“The NRA gives Debbie Halvorson an ‘A’ rating,” said Michael Pfleger, a Roman Catholic priest and gun control activist in Chicago who is supporting one of Halvorson’s opponents. “That tells me she should not be the representative from the 2nd District. If she gets an ‘A’ rating from the NRA, she gets an ‘F’ from me.”

Though she has described herself as a conservative Democrat, Halvorson voted with her party more than 90 percent of the time in Congress. She backed a cap-and-trade bill as well as President Barack Obama’s health care and economic stimulus measures. The onetime cosmetics saleswoman is pitching herself to voters as an experienced hand who can hit the ground running in Washington after Jackson’s long-running troubles that ended with his resignation in November.

But it’s her stance on guns that’s drawing the most attention.

* It’s not just Halvorson, though. The Kelly folks are zeroing in on Hutchinson as well. For instance

After being appointed to Debbie Halvorson’s state senate seat in 2010 Hutchinson received an A- rating from the NRA Political Victory fund, the highest rating for a candidate without a record of gun votes at the time. Until her current run, she has listed the NRA endorsement on her website. The NRA gave her a 92% rating for the 2012 cycle.

In her 2010 campaign, Hutchinson aggressively struck back against accusations from her Republican opponent that she was not pro-gun enough. In fact, Hutchinson released a statement to the press saying:

• “Law-abiding citizens don’t need any more infringements on their constitutional right to protect their families and their property.”
• “I know that my stance on gun rights isn’t the consensus in my party, but above all else, I represent the 40th district; a diverse district that is representative of the State of Illinois,” said Hutchinson. “I’m clear about our right to keep and bear arms, and I’ve been recognized for that.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        


60 Comments
  1. - wordslinger - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 9:55 am:

    Makes for an interesting primary.


  2. - OneMan - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 9:57 am:

    Seems like a winner for Kelly. The question is does she have enough time?


  3. - John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 9:58 am:

    Kudos to Halvorson and Hutchinson for staying true to principle.

    I’d give one to Kelly too, except that she’s being true to the wrong principle.


  4. - Hammer - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 9:58 am:

    Backseat driving here but I don’t think the strategy of ‘Robin vs the NRA’ is a winning one. A) it condenses a series of very nuanced issues (gun ownership, registration, tracking sales and much more) into an us or them scenario B) it removes agency from your voters and implies a scenario where if you just beat the NRA (which is highly unlikely) all the problems of gun violence in district will melt away C) Might make you a target by safe gun owners in district.

    Maybe I’m wrong


  5. - The Captain - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:08 am:

    This is very well timed to step all over the news Hutchinson was supposed to be making today.


  6. - unspun - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:09 am:

    Good move by Kelly….it may keep the mayor out of the primary. Turn it into a referendum on guns.


  7. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:11 am:

    turnout. turnout. turnout. have not looked at the numbers, but the reason Kelly wants those questionnaires out is to confuse the NRA voters, though I don’t think that is actually possible. a pure NRA turnout machine….Todd and his motorcycle brigade….might achieve an interesting result in a special election with lots of names on the ballot.


  8. - dupage dan - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:17 am:

    There appears to be an assumption, on the part of Kelly, that the voters in the district can’t/won’t differentiate between the criminals committing horrific crimes with illegal guns and the lawful citizens seeking to protect themselves from the former.
    It will be interesting to see how it all falls out.


  9. - USMCJanitor - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:19 am:

    Its a legitimate ask. doesnt matter if you are for or against more gun control, an opponent (I feel) has the right to point out survey results and what not during an election/campaign.

    Of course , they should do it for all of them.


  10. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:21 am:

    ===There appears to be an assumption, on the part of Kelly, that the voters in the district===

    Kelly did a poll, so you gotta figure it resonated. Also, Hutchinson has been running away from the progun side very fast, so you gotta figure she knows something as well.


  11. - Ken_in_Aurora - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:30 am:

    Serious question - don’t Pfleger’s actions cross the line to political campaign intervention and jeopardize the church’s not for profit status?

    http://www.irs.gov/Charities-&-Non-Profits/Charitable-Organizations/The-Restriction-of-Political-Campaign-Intervention-by-Section-501(c)(3)-Tax-Exempt-Organizations


  12. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:35 am:

    ===Serious question===

    Serious answer: The IRS almost never intervenes.


  13. - Wensicia - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:36 am:

    It’s a good move by Kelly. This issue is top in political discussions right now.


  14. - Ken_in_Aurora - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:40 am:

    “Serious answer: The IRS almost never intervenes.”

    That’s unfortunate, regardless of subject. The church has no place in the political process. (Yeah, call me an idealist.)


  15. - wordslinger - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:42 am:

    –Serious question - don’t Pfleger’s actions cross the line to political campaign intervention and jeopardize the church’s not for profit status?–

    Not so you’d notice with any church on any point of the political spectrum.


  16. - the Patriot - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:49 am:

    One day the people on Chicago are going to figure out the Mayor and other “leaders” are not protecting their children and choose to vote for someone willing to give them the means to protect their own families.

    A government official advocating gun control who is not willing to make public safety the number one priority is just a control advocate.

    How many kids die in your neighborhood before you realize the Mayor ain’t walkin the streets at night without protection? Time to wake up and law abiding citizens decide to listen to guys named Jeferson, Madison, and Adams and ignore Emanual, Madigan, and Quinn.


  17. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:51 am:

    ===The church has no place in the political process.===

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech”


  18. - Endangered Moderate Species - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:58 am:

    This seems like a good political move by Kelly. The anti-NRA campaign should work in that district. Halvorson and Hutchinson will need to use some energy and resources playing defense early in this campaign.

    I am also predicting 100+ Cap Fax postings for another gun topic. The sponsors love this subject.


  19. - Rod - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:58 am:

    Politico’s story that Rich posted states: “Now, black leaders — concerned about Halvorson’s position atop polls — say they’re prepared to make gun control the central issue in the contest.” Then the story goes on to quote Father Michael Pfleger on this issue, problem #1 Pfleger is white.

    While Father Pfleger has long ministered to Chicago’s Black community he none the less does not qualify as a Black leader. Democratic State Sen. Kwame Raoul, who is Black, is quoted later in the article but his quote has nothing to do with the gun issue at all it is about the split in the Black vote.

    But I do have to agree with Rich that based on polling data (Pew Research Center December 17-19, 2012) for support for gun control in Black communities attacking Halvorson is a winner in that community. Using this polling data when African Americans were asked what is more important 24% said protecting gun rights and 68% said controling gun ownership.

    But let’s be clear about something else, the district Halvorson is running in is 54 percent African-American. If Halvorson picks up a solid 24% of African-American voters who support gun rights with here current support in rural and white suburban areas she could win.


  20. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 11:00 am:

    ===But let’s be clear about something else, the district Halvorson is running in is 54 percent African-American.===

    That won’t be the population of the primary vote, however.


  21. - Just Observing - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 11:18 am:

    1. Is Robyn Kelly willing to release every single questionnaire from every organization she has completed? If not, she is being disingenuous.

    2. Zeroing in on Halvorsen on guns may just have the opposite effect of further differentiating from the pack. It also may encourage some GOPers or conservative independents to pull Dem. primary ballots for this race.


  22. - MrJM - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 11:24 am:

    A move that unifies the anti-NRA vote behind Kelly and splits the pro-NRA vote between H&H?

    My advice would be for Robin would be to keep hammering at that wedge.

    – MrJM


  23. - MadManMad - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 11:29 am:

    I think this is a pretty good strategic move on Halvorson’s part. She knows who her base is and that she has to keep them happy. The majority of her votes are going to come from the area she represented in the Senate.

    I assume she is hoping these moderate voters will support her this time, and come out in larger numbers than the urban voters. If you also figure in the fact that the vote will be split six ways to Sunday, I’d say her strategy may pay off.


  24. - mongo - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 11:35 am:

    Ken, to the great amusement of crowds at parties, I’ll often suggest that churches pay property taxes. Can you imagine the annual tax bill on a nice mega-church??

    Look at the many, many local government benefits churches receive, from fire and police so streets and san. My suggestion gets a little rhetorical exercise and is then promptly thrown out the door, along with the argument that churches should not participate in the political process.


  25. - Will Caskey - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 11:37 am:

    Flag on the play, MadManMad. “Strategic moves” have value only after you’ve raised enough money to research, poll and place a minimally effective ad buy. Till then earned media is just a waste of time the candidate could be using to raise said money.


  26. - Rod - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 12:08 pm:

    I don’t disagree with Rich that in the 2012 Democratic Party primary for the 2nd Congressional district that the percentage of Black votes was much larger than 54%, but still only 78,781 people voted in the primary of whom 22,672 voted for Halvorson. There were only 17,470 votes in the 2nd’s Republican primary in 2012.

    There are approximately 428,000 registered voters in the 2nd Congressional district. Since voting in the Democratic Primary is open to anyone who takes a Democrat ballot on election day there could well be more white Democrats suddenly appearing than has happened in the past.

    Halvorson’s voting record on gun issues could well motivate conservative white voters in the 2nd to cross over in this primary. Playing the gun card could cut both ways in this election.


  27. - John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 12:18 pm:

    >>>>> While Father Pfleger has long ministered to Chicago’s Black community he none the less does not qualify as a Black leader.

    I think that Father Mike and his flock would differ with you on that point.


  28. - Chitown Reg Dem - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 12:48 pm:

    interesting that guns are becoming the issue in a race that is so suburban. Kelly is blurring the issues with it. you have so much unemployment from the south side of Chicago to Hopkins Park, but she tries to make it a one issue race. Didn’t Jesse, Jr for a FOID card ? I believe the answer is yes.


  29. - bourbonrich - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 12:58 pm:

    The only chance that conservatives have to influence this race is to grab a Democratic ballot and I agree with other posters that those newbie Dems are likely to be voting for Debbie H or Toi H and may be able to sway an election that is this splintered.


  30. - Hank - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 1:02 pm:

    Now, black leaders — concerned about Halvorson’s position atop polls ….so happy we are in “post racial” America


  31. - Chitown Reg Dem - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 1:06 pm:

    I had a funny conversation the other day. I said I believe White voters are less likely to vote along racial lines than Blacks today. Hutchinson pulled 52,000 votes last election from the same district as supposedly is Halverson’s base. I assume many of them are going to vote on the issues and not race as so many assume


  32. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 1:07 pm:

    Sam m: You’re right about people attacking rifles mostly in ignorance as per FBI 2011 stats, only one fatality in Illinois was related to rifle. I’m as opposed to gun control as anyone, the reporting on the Sandy Hook tragedy was horrendous and the reports were very confusing; but… I believe Adam Lanza did use a Bushmaster semi-auto rifle at Sandy Hook and the firearm in the trunk was a shotgun.


  33. - Irish - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 1:14 pm:

    I am not a rabid pro-gun individual. I have some and have used them for hunting and target shooting. However I get tired of politicians who believe that more laws are going to change what is happening in Chicago. They can’t solve the problems that are really causing the almost nightly killings so they pick gun ownership as the one reason for the deaths. Why? Because it is something they can rally people around to get their votes and it is easier than fixing the real problems.
    Gun control, one of two issues have risen to the top of the State’s agenda in the last few months. The other one is immigrant driver’s licenses.

    I find it ironic that in the case of immigrant driver’s licenses we are told that it will make driving safer for everybody based on the premise that the mere issuing of a license will make certain that the holder will have insurance and will drive better. We are told that the few who will break the law should not cause us to undermine the rights of the majority who will not.
    Yet on gun control we are told that we have to undermine the rights of the majority to protect society from the few that break the already existing laws.
    Why would politicians take such opposite positions, on one hand infringing on rights of the majority and on the other hand protecting them? Purely for votes. The positions taken while on opposite poles of civil rights are the most popular positions to the majority of Chicago voters. And that is the Pied Piper to Chicago Dems.


  34. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 1:37 pm:

    Hank & Chitown: Ideally, voters wouldn’t consider race at all. In actuality, one can look at election results and see it is a very large factor for some.


  35. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 1:43 pm:

    Irish: You nailed it. Check out Rich’s link to article on mental health funding. It is easier and cheaper to divert the public’s attention away to something else such as gun control and driver’s licenses rather than deal with the core issues such as mental health services, gangs, drugs and etc. What is amazing is that many fall for it.


  36. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 1:51 pm:

    @Sam m, last week, the police Lt. who has given all of the shooting updates for the Newtown tragedy stated that the gun used WAS an assault rifle. he also stated that the pistol etc. rumor was a fiction of the internet. you can find a story in the Grenwich CT. times. I did a search on line because of your post to find that you are perpetuating a myth. there was an asssault rifle used to kill all of the victims at the school.


  37. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 2:00 pm:

    Amalia: It was not an assault rifle. To be considered an assault rifle, it must be capable of full auto - firing multiple times with a single press of the trigger. That firearm was just a semi-auto.


  38. - Slick Willy - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:01 pm:

    Logic- I so wish that people would stop using the term “assault rifle”. The average American simply cannot purchase an assault rifle.

    For what it is worth, the firearm that was found in the trunk of the shooter’s car was a shotgun, not an assault rifle.


  39. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:14 pm:

    @logic not emotion, why don’t you ask the police officer at Sandy Hook what he means. the shooter did not use a pistol, he used the Bushmaster, which is a semi automatic, and which is called a military style assault rifle. the attempt at denial about what happened and the firearm used at Sandy Hook is shameful.


  40. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:35 pm:

    ===To be considered an assault rifle, it must be capable of full auto===

    Wrong. Fully auto guns have been banned since the 1930s.


  41. - the Patriot - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:40 pm:

    This is not about Sandy Hook. It is about a whether someone will bet in an election that people are tired of empty promises from politicians to protect their kids or support a candidate who will let them protect themselves.

    I don’t understand people who let their kids walk the streets at night after one gets killed. A kid gets killed on my street, and I keep my kids locked up and I walk them to school with a gun ready to defend. Sooner or later people have to figure out the government policy of gun control failed and support politicians that will let them protect themselves. This issue is a gamble on whether people are ready to take responsibility to protect their own families or whether they want to leave it to politicians who have armed guards and live in gated subdivisions.

    A politician that advocates gun control needs to be willing to walk these streets without a gun. Otherwise it is just pandering and manipulating tragedy for political purposes.


  42. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:44 pm:

    Thank you, Rich and amalia, for correcting that misstatement.


  43. - Endangered Moderate Species - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:57 pm:

    Patriot- You may be a bit over-zealous with your position, though I admire your passion. Your line of thinking will not work for a candidate running in this district (or most districts). Kelly currently has the upper hand in this debate. You can all it pandering and manipulating for political purposes, but so what? This is how politics works in a democracy. Ben Franklin, who is possibly the greatest American politician and patriot, was a master at pandering and manipulating tragedy for political purposes.


  44. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:58 pm:

    I am knowledgable of the National Firearms Act of 1934 and Gun Control Act of 1968. I suggest a quick google search of “assault rifle”. Again, the firearm in that tragedy was simply a semi-auto.


  45. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 4:03 pm:

    Perhaps, I should clarify. To be technically accurate, an assault rifle has to be capable of select fire (including full auto). The NFA of 34 restricted them. The GCA of 68 changed it to make restriction meet constitutional requirements. That said, one can call anything whatever they want. I just hope no one bans assault tricycles before my kids get old enough for bicycles.


  46. - wordslinger - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 4:16 pm:

    –A kid gets killed on my street, and I keep my kids locked up and I walk them to school with a gun ready to defend. –

    Oh, that’s swell.

    Logic, I’m sure the folks in Newtown are relieved the Bushmaster doesn’t meet your definition of an assault rifle.

    As for those assault tricycles, what purpose are they designed for?


  47. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 4:35 pm:

    Word: Millions of AR15 styled rifles are used for hunting, target shooting, and self-defense. I don’t know; but would not be surprised if there were more childhood injuries from tricycles and bicycles than rifles. I have heard that there were far more child deaths from big screen TVs than rifles.

    Lanza had mental issues. It is impossible to prevent people from obtaining firearms (if you disagree, explain to me how successful the drug war is) so why doesn’t society focus on the mental health issues of those who pose a risk to others by whatever means they might have (firearms, explosives, knives, bats, cars, etc.).


  48. - Todd - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 4:41 pm:

    - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 3:35 pm:

    ===To be considered an assault rifle, it must be capable of full auto===

    Wrong. Fully auto guns have been banned since the 1930s.

    Ah no they haven’t. In 1934 they were regulated and taxed $200 each which still holds today. In 1986 the number allowed for sale to civilians was capped at about 186,000.

    Illinois has had a ban on full autos for as long as i can remember, but there was a peroid under Gov thompson where they tried to legalize them for a short period.

    Some 30 states allow the ownership of full autos, indiana, kentucky and wisconsin to name a couple. It is a state by state decision. The 1986 cap has driven the price up better than the stock market. Example, an orginal thompson will start at $35k.

    The mini-gun you saw jesse vetura use in preditor will run you about $75k a beat up uzi will cost you $10-14k.

    One of the places gun guys loose the debate is insisting on all this techinacally correct jargon. To gun guys, an assault rifle is a full auto select fire, meaning you can choose between full auto or semi-auto modes of fire. It was the original definition, but has since been perverted by the anti-gun crowd.

    Hense, now you see the anti-gunners calling them military style or patterned rifles ect.

    The 1934 national firearms act(NFA) regulated machineguns, silencers, short barreld shotguns, short barreled rifles, things over 50 caliber and destructive devices, things that go boom instead of bang due to the gang wars of capone and company during prohibition.

    Once upon a time in this country you could buy a thompson machinegun out of a catologue or from a hardware store as easy as you bought a hammer.

    Class dissmissed. . . .


  49. - Logic not emotion - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 4:59 pm:

    Thanks Todd! I had the links to prove I was right on that and everything related to the gun control acts; but I wasn’t sure it was “ok” to post links.


  50. - Anonymous - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 5:01 pm:

    Why should it matter wheather the NRA’s endorsement or lack thereof of Candidate in the 2nd has a direct correlation on the 500+ murders committed in Chicago; a high % of which took place in the 2nd District. The NRA does not endorse the Mayor of Chicago or any of the 50 Ald., State and Senators from Chicago; yet, the numer of muders in chicago keep raising. Yes, the NRA never endorse JJJ; yet, murders ran rampart in his district while he was in office for the many years he represented the 2nd.


  51. - Todd - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 5:17 pm:

    Your right anon, but jjj got his FOID revoked for bis little hospital stay.

    And he use to. Buy his guns at chucks. Including some of the very “assault weapons” his father and Robin rant about.


  52. - wordslinger - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:07 pm:

    –Word: Millions of AR15 styled rifles are used for hunting, target shooting, and self-defense.–

    You go to the Bushmaster site, the tagline says “When your mission calls for more, you want ACR enhanced.”

    What mission are we talking about here? Target shooting?

    Kids got mowed down by these killing machines. That’s what they’re designed for. You want to compare them to bicycles and big-screen TVs?

    Logic, not Emotion?


  53. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 28, 13 @ 10:35 pm:

    Back to what the obfuscation that started with sam m was about, the shooting in Newtown DID NOT take place with a handgun or a shotgun, it was an AR15, and that is a weapon that falls under Assault Weapon bans. you don’t own the language, Todd.


  54. - Todd - Tuesday, Jan 29, 13 @ 8:05 am:

    Amilia — Not all AR-15 fell under the ban. The one owned in CT and used at Newtown was ban compliant.

    Yuor right we don;t own the langauge and it wa apart of my point that to many gun guys get hung up on clip vs Magazine or what a assualt rifle is. But here is the genesis of the whole “assault rifle” speak. . . .

    “Assault weapons—just like armor-piercing bullets, machine guns, and plastic firearms—are a new topic. The weapons’ menacing looks, coupled with the public’s confusion over fully automatic machine guns versus semi-automatic assault weapons—anything that looks like a machine gun is assumed to be a machine gun—can only increase the chance of public support for restrictions on these weapons. In addition, few people can envision a practical use for these weapons.”

    -Josh Sugarmann, Assault Weapons and Accessories in America, 1988


  55. - Blue Dog - Tuesday, Jan 29, 13 @ 8:22 am:

    Amalia- Connecticut has in place an Assault Weapon ban identical to the 1994 federal law. The Bushmaster used in Newton was legal under that law, therefore it could not be considered an “assault weapon”.

    New versions of an “assault weapon” ban reduce cosmetic features from 2 to 1, creating a new definition of “assault weapon”. So far New York is the only state to pass this new definition.

    All of this shows the problem with the term “assault weapon” - it can be defined to meet whatever a politician desires. The most recent version of the “assault weapons” ban in IL would’ve banned almost all modern firearms, pistols & shotguns included because of a poor definition.


  56. - Blue Dog - Tuesday, Jan 29, 13 @ 8:25 am:

    Never mind- Todd beat me to it. Should’ve refreshed before submitting from this mobile browser. Sorry about that.


  57. - Todd - Tuesday, Jan 29, 13 @ 9:00 am:

    California has a single feature ban. The Chicago bills have been that way also


  58. - Logic not emotion - Tuesday, Jan 29, 13 @ 9:06 am:

    Word: Perhaps you’re speaking from the perspective of emotion not logic?

    Anti-gun people need to educate themselves on the topic and try to reach a logical conclusion. Yes. Per Peter Sandman’s outrage theory, people will get more upset at intentional death or injury to innocents; but which should we really focus on if we truly want to do good? Should we focus on something that contributed to the deaths of 20 children or something that contributed to the deaths of 52 children? Based upon just that, which should we ban Rifles (20) or TVs (52)? Don’t react emotionally, think logically.


  59. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jan 29, 13 @ 9:22 am:

    Logic, as a logical guy, I’m sure you understand the difference between accidents and something used for its designed purpose.


  60. - Amalia - Tuesday, Jan 29, 13 @ 9:29 am:

    @ Todd, just as I’m sure Richard Pearson does not speak for you, Josh Sugarman does not speak for many of us.


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        * Breaks turn in Quintana's favor against Tigers
        * Molina outrighted; roster spot opens up for Rodon
        * Wilkins, Snodgress part of White Sox shuffle


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        * Pullman commemorates Labor Day holiday's origins..
        * Divvy faces growing pains in Chicago..
        * Jo Daviess County Illinois..
        * Why is Gov. Pat Quinn living off minimum wage f.....


        * Cubs honor Jackie Robinson West little leaguers
        * Man found dead in central Illinois was hit by car
        * US eating habits improve a bit _ except among poor
        * Study: Action-packed TV might make you snack more
        * Patients to start applying for medical marijuana
        * US Rep. Duckworth announces she's pregnant
        * Bloomington shuttle bus driver charged with DUI
        * Chicago police: Murders down, shootings up
        * Little League team honored with parade in Vegas
        * Rauner vow revives governor's mansion question

        * Audit finds state lax in reviewing eligibility for children’s health insurance program
        * Does the governor need to live in the Executive Mansion?
        * Statehouse Insider: Hands off investments
        * State of unions: AFSCME wins some, loses some on outsourcing
        * State of unions: Domination of Illinois' workforce becomes campaign issue
        * State of unions: Lawmakers approved keeping some workers out of unions
        * State of Illinois posts applications for medical marijuana businesses
        * DNR issues long-awaited ‘fracking’ rules
        * Quinn grants 38 clemency requests
        * IDNR issues long-awaited ‘fracking’ rules

        * If only it were this easy to lift share prices
        * 'Chicagoland' star returns to school
        * Amid re-election fight, Quinn pushes through a tax on business
        * Chicago's worst IPO in 2014: Ryerson
        * Why ComEd is worried about your smartphone


        * Moms, dads get kids ready for school
        * ‘Long way to go’ but Roseland Hospital showing signs of stability
        * ‘Long way to go’ but Roseland Hospital shows signs of stability
        * 2 dead, 10 wounded in shootings across Chicago since Friday evening
        * CPS can cheer, but challenges remain
        * Elmhurst couple in murder-suicide were doting parents: neighbors
        * When Europe pays  kidnappers, Americans die
        * Rogers Park woman killed in crash on Tri-State Tollway near Schiller Park
        * Prosecutors: Man in CTA stabbing permanently disfigured
        * CTA offering free rides for students on first day of school


        * Man charged in shooting after soccer match in Oak Forest
        * 2 shot in separate incidents on Northwest, Southeast Sides
        * Cops: Man on moped leads cops on North Side chase
        * Survivors of Elmhurst family laud parents 'unwavering' commitment
        * Survivors of Elmhurst family laud parents 'unwavering' commitment
        * 1 dead, 13 hurt in shootings across city
        * I-90/94 reopened after semi rollover leads to inbound closure
        * Body of Chicago Heights boy, 14, pulled from Kankakee River
        * Rainstorms part of Labor Day forecast
        * Tammy Duckworth pregnant, expecting girl in December


        * Newborn Found Alive In Jacksonville Trash Bin
        * DNR Releases Fracking Rules
        * Listen to State Week - August 29, 2014
        * 'Belleville' The Movie Is NOT A Documentary
        * Journalist and doctor encourage honest conversations about death
        * Undocumented Immigrants Call For Presidential Orders
        * State Retirees To Stop Paying Health Premiums
        * How America's most plentiful bird disappeared
        * Pregnant Workers To Be Protected Under New Law
        * Updates From The Prairie Capital Convention Center


        * Catherine Rampell: Tech firms’ poor record of diversity
        * Audit finds state lax in reviewing eligibility for children’s health insurance program
        * Does the governor need to live in the Executive Mansion?
        * Our Opinion: Driving into floodwater a deadly practice
        * Angie Muhs: A debate in Springfield would send the right message from candidates
        * Charles Krauthammer: Lower corporate tax rates. Now.
        * Bernard Schoenburg: Dillman, Watson looking at possible runs for alderman
        * Statehouse Insider: Hands off investments
        * Statehouse Insider: Hands off investments
        * State of unions: AFSCME wins some, loses some on outsourcing


        * Patients to start applying for medical marijuana
        * MJ college hoops chat (9/3)
        * Illinois to spend another $102M on high-speed rail
        * Bradshaw says Bost is derailing efforts to organize 12th District debate
        * Nearly three years later, city still has one tenant in Main Street warehouse set for demolition
        * Landscaping at I-64 corridor in Fairview Heights will take more time to flourish
        * Our view
        * Fireworks keep kids up late on school night
        * Bloomington shuttle bus driver charged with DUI
        * PHOTOS: Labor Day Pops Concert


        * U.S. carries out counterterrorism strike in Somalia
        * Lawrence calls for investigation into stolen pictures
        * South Carolina political campaign goes to the dogs
        * Big chance for Bears' defense to prove itself
        * Obama: ‘Revving' economy calls for higher wages

        * Roskam: Making college more affordable for...
        * Army Veteran Shane Scherer Joins Roskam's ...
        * Roskam speaks on issues to chamber lunch c...
        * Roskam talks tax reform, health care, immi...
        * Roskam hires wounded veteran in West Chica...
        * Inactive Congress Discussed - Alton Daily ...
        * Roskam, Kirk speak to local business owner...
        * Roskam Talks Taxes - Alton Daily News
        * Nadler introduces resolution condemning an...
        * Roskam gives business leaders vision for f...

        * 47th Annual Labor day picnic...
        * 47th Annual Labor day picnic...
        * 47th Annual Labor day picnic...
        * 47th Annual Labor day picnic...
        * Durbin, Bustos slam Schilling for work wit......

        * Rubio, Colleagues Call For Latin American ......
        * Putin Hopeful Russia Won’t Lose Right to H......

        * Division Street Bridge gets Old Bailey Runaround
        * Report: Minimum Wage Increase Would Help 1 In 5 Illinois Children
        * Southwest Side Chicagoans Question TIF Use In 23rd Ward (UPDATED)
        * Harris v. Quinn: Another Nail In The Coffin Or Shot In The Arm For Labor?
        * OP-ED: What FDR Actually Said And What Bruce Rauner Doesn't Get This Labor Day
        * Election 2014
        * Guest Post: Harris v. Quinn: Another Nail In The Coffin Or Shot In The Arm For Labor?
        * Congresswoman Schakowsky Participates In 'Come Care With Me Day'
        * Why New York City Opposed Abe Lincoln
        * New London school board takes back its offer to “Dr.” Terrence Carter.


        * Governor Quinn Invests $102 Million in High-Speed Rail Upgrades on Chicago-St. Louis Line - Funding Will Improve Capacity, Safety on Joliet-Dwight Segment
        * Quinn Refuses to Answer New IDOT Questions
        * IDNR Delivers Revised Rules to Implement Hydraulic Fracturing Regulatory Act - Rules strengthened to ensure public participation, improve transparency, toughen penalties and protect the environment
        * Governor Quinn Proclaims September as “Recovery Month” in Illinois - Encourages people to speak up about mental illness and substance abuse
        * Governor Quinn Dedicates Jane Byrne Interchange - Governor Renames Circle Interchange in Honor of Chicago’s First and Only Female Mayor to Date




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