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They’re close, on paper

Thursday, May 30, 2013

* The concealed carry negotiations continue. SJ-R

The Senate’s top Democrat said Wednesday both sides of the debate have made “a lot of progress” as talks between both houses advance in an attempt to reach some middle ground.

“We’d like to pass a bill,” Senate President John Cullerton, D-Chicago, said. “If the two sides were so far apart, there’d be nothing to talk about (and) I’d say this doesn’t look good. But this looks very good.”

Technically, yes, they’re close. But, as with any negotiation, those last items are always the toughest

But a leading pro-gun lawmaker and sponsor of a more permissive House bill, Rep. Brandon Phelps, D-Harrisburg, said both chambers are still miles apart over how to approach a “pre-emption” provision pro-gun advocates are pushing that would wipe out all local gun ordinances — even those unrelated to concealed carry. […]

Last week, Phelps’ bill with absolute pre-emption passed the House with 85 votes, he said, adding pre-emption is something pro-gun advocates are not willing to give up.

“You already voted something (like) absolute pre-emption for the whole state; it’s hard to take back something on that because we’d feel like we’d be going backwards,” he said.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 11:36 am:

    It’s far from impossible to craft a sensible compromise between the incredibly strong preemption clause in the House version and the incredibly weak one in the Senate version. I just wish I had more confidence in the sincere interest of all the people at the negotiating table to actually make a deal.

  2. - reformer - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:03 pm:

    Call me naive, but why not preempt only on concealed carry? That way each side gets something.

  3. - John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:09 pm:

    >>>>> but why not preempt only on concealed carry? That way each side gets something.

    No one will be able to carry in Chicago except for Chicago residents who jump through the additional hoops to get a CFP card, and who carry a firearm that meets Chicago’s criteria.

    My Glock would not qualify as it has 13 rd magazines, and my 5-shot S&W revolver would not qualify because it has an integral laser sighting aid.

    I would not qualify, as I don’t live in Chicago.

  4. - wordslinger - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:11 pm:

    I find it hard to believe that the NRA wouldn’t take a statewide c-c law over preemption. That’s way more than half of loaf.

    If the Senate sticks to their guns, the NRA could end up with nothing but home rule on everything.

  5. - Cook County Commoner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:16 pm:

    I’m wondering how much of the pre-emption issue relates to Cook and Chicago pols being unwilling to lose the ability to arrange for c-c in “special cases.”

  6. - Dozer - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:25 pm:

    Its not just the preemption, it is a lot of other pieces when you ad them up. 16 hours of training, fees, the list of restricted places.

    Add them all up and the house bill had the carrot that made some of us gun guys willing to hold our noses and accept it.

    But why should grant park be off limits?

    Why should farmers markets and other places be off limits?

    They want to have all the exclusions they can, and in the City, you will be lucky to walk down the sidewalk.

  7. - William K - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:34 pm:

    You mean the same people who crafted a bill that would not allow anyone to qualify are really worried about preemtion for what it is. They need it as a tool to make local restrictions so strict as to not allow ccw and we all know it! Compromise my a**!

  8. - Chicago Gunowner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:35 pm:

    @wordslinger - without preemption of all gun laws you basically have no carry law at all. Any of the 200+ home rule communities could impose their own restrictions on the type of firearm that can be possessed as well as require their own special permits and licenses for firearms possession. Chicago already does all of the above. It’s impossible to separate carry from other gun laws, because all the others affect carry.

  9. - Chicago Gunowner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:42 pm:

    And one more thing, the “we must preserve local gun laws for the safety of the public” claim falls short on close examination. According to a Chicago Reader article a few years ago on the Chicago Firearms Ordinance Chicago has prosecuted its own laws, on average, just 79 times a year since 1982. As one cop they interviewed said “it’s just another ticket we can write”, prosecuting under the state law is much preferred because then it’s a felony with a prison sentence. These local laws are for symbolic purposes only, affecting hard-core criminals not one whit while deterring only the law-abiding. They certainly don’t keep anyone safer, as the 15 people shot (4 died) yesterday in Chicago attests to. And I’d wager none of the shooters had a FOID card.

  10. - 47th Ward - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:45 pm:

    ===without preemption of all gun laws you basically have no carry law at all. Any of the 200+ home rule communities could impose their own restrictions on the type of firearm that can be possessed as well as require their own special permits and licenses for firearms possession.===

    This is exactly what will happen if no bill passes by June 9th. It’s time to find the middle ground and get this done. Tick-tock.

  11. - wordslinger - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:49 pm:

    CG, without a bill passed by a super-majority in both houses, don’t you get home rule in spades?

    As hard as it might be for some to believe, banning guns from Grant Park and farmer’s markets is not that outlandish in some minds. It’s a big state with diverse opinions.

  12. - Hedley Lamarr - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:50 pm:

    Rich, I agree that it looks easy, but both sides do appear entrenched. But then again, there is the Springfield phenomenon of stopping clocks at 11:59 pm on May 31st.

    I noted earlier today that preemption of local ordinances does not seem to be an issue of principle for Pres. Cullerton. The Trib has an article today about HB1247, which sets a statewide ban on cellphone driving. Quinn is very vocal about opposing SB2139, but silent on HB1247.

  13. - Mason born - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:54 pm:

    Seems to me the only way to compromise on this would be to specify that firearm regulations only apply to the residences of the homerule community. Chicago can keep the permits, registration, and mag bans but they only affect those who legally reside in Chicago. Anyone from outside Chicago can carry through Chicago (or other homerule) without running afoul of the law. Makes it simple for the Police use IL Drivers License as proof of residence and in a few minutes the police can determine whether you are under Home rule or not.

    Anything else would not make sense. For instance just the Registration portion would make anyone from outside Chicago a criminal just for traveling through.

  14. - Mason born - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:55 pm:


    To me the Senate sticking to it’s guns simply makes it more likely that June 9th there will not be a bill at all.

  15. - wordslinger - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 12:58 pm:

    –To me the Senate sticking to it’s guns simply makes it more likely that June 9th there will not be a bill at all.–

    Right. Then you get home rule anyway.

  16. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:05 pm:

    ===Seems to me the only way to compromise on this would be to specify that firearm regulations only apply to the residences of the homerule community.===

    @Mason, I think you are basically on the right track with this suggestion.

  17. - Chicago Gunowner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:13 pm:

    @wordslinger and 47th Ward - it’s home rule anyway without preemption. And without a state carry law Chicago and other places will only be able to charge their gangbangers with misdemeanors when they catch them on their way to a drive-by, as opposed to felonies for violating the state law.

    Seems a lot for Chicago to give up to preserve their symbolic gun laws, and this is why I think the Chicago Dems will ultimately cave.

    I don’t care about the rules on parks and restaurants and such, those can be altered later with a simple majority vote. It will be much easier when the “wild west, blood running down the streets” Chicken Littles are proven wrong once again just as they have in every other state. I think others on the pro-gun side should think this through, preemption is the key.

  18. - 47th Ward - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:16 pm:

    ===this is why I think the Chicago Dems will ultimately cave.===

    They might agree to a compromise on the preemption issue, but it won’t be the House-passed super preemption. For Chicago Dems, if the Senate bill passes as currently written or if nothing passes, it’s the same result. Why on earth would they cave now?

  19. - wordslinger - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:17 pm:

    –And without a state carry law Chicago and other places will only be able to charge their gangbangers with misdemeanors when they catch them on their way to a drive-by, as opposed to felonies for violating the state law.–

    C’mon, man.

  20. - Mason born - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:19 pm:


    I agree that no bill is Homerule mess. However it is better to have the homerule mess with no bill than a bill with homerule mess. Mainly because with the exception of the north east corner of the state most homerule communities will be pretty reasonable and similar to what Springfield was discussing. Add to that Springfield was discussing honoring permits from Peoria and vise versa you could get to something similar to reciprocity like we have on a national level.

  21. - Anonymous - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:19 pm:

    Hi Rich, I had to read four paragraphs before I knew this post was about gun control.

  22. - Mason born - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:21 pm:


    From what i have seen the only real issue left is the Preemption. I think they have reached some common ground on the rest. Personally i like what i have heard on the restaurant thing allowed but strict penalties like DUI.

  23. - RonOglesby - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:27 pm:

    The preemption thing is easy. It HAS to be done or me, carrying my standard carry 14 round mag becomes illegal in Chicago/Cook County (or any other home rule that passes something like that).

    Its not like we make it up that people get arrested in Chicago for breaking Chicago only laws with regards to not having a Chicago Firearms Permit (even though you cant get one if you dont live in the city) then you have to spend thousands on a lawyer to get charges dropped.

    You cannot have CCW without the CCW weapons, accessories, magazine, etc Laws being standard across the state.

    Going to post your City or Town or County laws at every entrance like the speed limit?

  24. - Rich Miller - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:29 pm:

    ===I had to read four paragraphs before I knew===

    Yeah. I was rushing to go do a TV show and didn’t realize that I wasn’t being all that clear. Sorry. Fixed.

  25. - Chicago Gunowner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 1:37 pm:

    47th Ward said “Why on earth would they cave now?”

    Because going to home rule means that Chicago can only charge those carrying guns illegally (99% of who are gangbangers) with a misdemeanor which carries a maximum sentence of 1 year in Cook County Jail, and given the already overcrowded state of that facility few would do more than a few months at most if they don’t just get community service.

    For pro-gunners like myself nothing at all changes. I can’t carry in Chicago now, and won’t be able to under whatever stupid law the Chicago City Council passes. Those outside of Cook County will probably get to carry, as those home rule communities are far more gun-friendly and the rules there will likely be far less strict than the House bill.

    In short, the anti-gun side has far more to lose by standing their ground on the preemption issue.

  26. - 47th Ward - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 2:05 pm:

    I don’t think we’ll see too many otherwise law-abiding FOID card holders who happen to get caught carrying their firearms tossed in jail. A nice fine for a first offense and impounding the recovered firearm is punishment enough, don’t you think?

    Non FOID holders who get caught, on the other hand, which you correctly point out include lots of gangbangers, will have their firearms confiscated and might see the inside of Cook County jail, which they already do. Also, I didn’t realize felony UUW was tossed out as an option for the State’s Attorney. Can you give us more info on that or maybe I’m misinterpreting your comments.

  27. - Chicago Gunowner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 2:24 pm:

    @47th ward - You just demonstrated why home rule gun laws are far more effective at keeping the lawful gun owners from carrying than the criminals.

    Gangbangers won’t be able to be prosecuted for carrying under state law since the state law was thrown out because there’s no provision for carrying legally. If they can claim out of state residency they can’t be charged with a FOID violation either.

    Btw we’re practically neighbors, I’m in the 33rd Ward.

  28. - 47th Ward - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 2:36 pm:

    Thanks for the info, neighbor. It might be different in 33, but on our side of the river, almost everyone I’ve talked to is not in favor of CCW. I tell them there is nothing to be afraid of, and if the law is done right, it’ll be a good thing. But the subject of guns is pretty emotional and there isn’t much I can say to persuade them that people walking around Lincoln Square with loaded firearms is a good thing for the neighborhood.

  29. - Don Gwinn - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 2:49 pm:

    The main reason many gun owners don’t want to concede further on preemption is that the strong preemption clause was the bone they threw us so that we’d accept a lot of other changes that we find noxious. 16 hours of training is frankly ridiculous when other states do it with no required training at all and most require four hours. $150 is a ridiculous fee when the ISP had already negotiated a fee under $100, especially paired with the added expense of the artificially inflated training time requirement (it turns out that instructors don’t work for free.) The list of restricted places grew, and I realize that many reading this think that was a good thing, but understand that gun owners hate it. We know other states get by just fine without such restrictions, and personally I expect those lists to get whittled down over time as they have elsewhere. And the one that nobody mentions is reciprocity; we’ll be one of the only states in the union with zero reciprocity with any other state. That’s pointless and stupid, and again, I expect that to be undone in the years to come. Phelps’ original bill had reciprocity with states with substantially similar requirements; what could have been wrong with that? It’s just so nonsensical.

    We were asked to accept all that and told that statewide preemption on all gun laws was the sweetener. Now when the Senate (well, Cullerton–I notice he hasn’t called a vote on his bill, which makes me think “the Senate” might not be on board with enough votes) demands that it be removed, it shouldn’t be surprising that we object.

    I saw an episode of Top Gear once in which Jeremy Clarkson purchased a used car for one of their cheap-used-car challenges. It was old, loose, and clearly had issues, but he was willing to deal with all that because it was some special edition Lamborghini with a great engine that he thought would give him an advantage (and was just plain desirable to those in the know.) When they did a dyno test, it turned out the power was surprisingly low, and then he found a receipt for purchase of a set of badges. The car had never had the engine he wanted; someone had just re-badged it. That’s how a deal without full preemption looks to the pro-gun side here.

  30. - Chicago Gunowner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 3:24 pm:

    Don Gwinn said “(well, Cullerton–I notice he hasn’t called a vote on his bill, which makes me think “the Senate” might not be on board with enough votes)”

    True, I suspect that the Cullerton/Raoul bill can’t even pass the Senate, let alone the House where it will be DOA without preemption. The House bill would likely pass the Senate with a huge margin if the Chicago Dem-dominated Executive Committee would allow a floor vote.

  31. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:09 pm:

    Apparently an agreement in principle has been reached on preemption. As described to me, it sounds like a very good deal for gun owners.

  32. - Mason born - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:17 pm:


    Care to elaborate?

  33. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:32 pm:

    The basic concept is State law preemption as to anything and everything related to “concealed handguns” (registration, possession, transportation, carrying, etc.). Full preemption re: transportation of all firearms and ammunition, provided you are in compliance with FOID. Chicago (and other home rules) can keep assault weapons ban, magazine size limit, registration, etc., but only as to long guns (which can’t be carried concealed under the legislation anyway). A pretty fair deal.

  34. - Russ - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:39 pm:

    “A pretty fair deal?” What a crock!

  35. - Ken_in_Aurora - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:41 pm:

    In my opinion, a fair compromise would be to exempt CCW holders from all home rule firearms regs. They’ve already passed a higher level of scrutiny than FOID holders.

  36. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:43 pm:

    @Russ: Sorry you don’t like it. The NRA apparently doesn’t share your view.

  37. - Mason born - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:46 pm:


    Have to say i agree with you. While it would be nice if Phelps language on the last bill had won out i am pretty sure it was always a long shot. While i still like my idea better (homerule can only affect residents) this isn’t to heinous.

  38. - Russ - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:46 pm:

    Then the NRA is selling me out!!! Not exactly what I expected for my Endowment Life money and a lifetime of membership. THE SECOND AMENDMENT IS THE SECOND AMENDMENT! PERIOD!!! Cite the NRA reps supporting this and I’ll contact them NOW!!!

  39. - Russ - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:48 pm:

    “Charles: Have to say i agree with you.”

    None of you people fight for a damn thing around here. Compromise? COMPROMISE ISN’T FIGHTING FOR WHAT’S RIGHT! Just rollover and die, around here. Pathetic.

  40. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:51 pm:

    Yeah, Russ, nobody’s been fighting about this at all in Springfield. This debate’s all been one big Kumbaya.

    Get a clue.

  41. - downstater - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 4:56 pm:

    If that is the compromise then the pro-gun side needs the fee to come back to $100 and 8hrs of training.

    Once the fees get too high or the training hours too long (more hours means more money) the bill starts to smack of racism and out of reach for the lower classes.

  42. - RNUG - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 5:03 pm:

    IS Quinn on board or will this be another bill that becomes law without his signature?

  43. - Whats missing. - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 5:56 pm:

    The 7th declared statutes unconstitutional right? Right. That means the offending code must be removed right. WRONG. All of this “negotiation” and legislation is about a way to KEEP that offending code IN PLACE by adding a permission slip out in front of it. That is shameful on its face and in application and the real reason politicians want to pass this legislation you see, that way they can avoid responsibility for all the decades of unconstitutional prosecutions. He k, they can simply continue them going forward by saying you should have paid for your permit. You know, your poll tax. It’s ridiculous.

    Remember folks, this isn’t just about guns. It’s about far more than that. ARMS folks. Blades stun guns and other arms matter too. Oh and then there is that whole OPEN CARRY gorilla in the room that advocacy groups seem to have forgotten about entirely.

    What’s taking place is a travesty on many levels and that’s why NO legislation should pass now. The offending code must be stricken and the lets have Lisa appeal - and lose as badly with the home rule idea as she did with not applying to states and within the home.

    There is tremendous shame to go around for those who Negotiated Rights Away. And never before have so many been watching legislators and lobby groups so closely.

    It’s best to have June 9 come and have Chicago and cook county cook their own goose.

  44. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 6:36 pm:

    “Whats missing” is any connection between you and reality.

  45. - Don Gwinn - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 7:12 pm:

    Well, that escalated quickly.

    I would advise everyone to wait to see what language comes out (if any does) and then wait to see whether the NRA actually does support it before you condemn them for supporting something. So far we’ve seen no language and the NRA has not supported either SB2193 or HB0183. That’s what we actually know.

  46. - downstate commissioner - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 8:28 pm:

    Some people just can’t or won’t understand how the political process works in Illinois. Russ and Whats Missing are evidently hard-core gunners. While I agree with their sentiments, the reality is “Chicago”. Personally, I was surprised that Madigan allowed the house bill to go forward with its complete preemption of all gun laws; apparently, he is not as hard-core anti-gun as Quinn and Emmanuel.
    Pro-gunners should never have expected to get “shall issue” with no limits: it just wasn’t going to happen in Illinois, and it wouldn’t have happened at all without a court order.
    The idea of constitutional carry sounded good to me at first glance, but after reading this blog, I have come to believe that it would be a complete mess, and apparently, a lot of legislators have reached the same conclusion. I believe that a compromise will be reached, whether the hard-core individuals on either side like it or not.

  47. - 47th Ward - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 9:22 pm:

    Well said downstate commissioner.

  48. - scout26 - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 11:22 pm:

    A couple of points.

    Both bills are basically “May Issue” any police agency can turn you down for any or no reason.

    Phelp’s bill has preemption and the NRA and ISRA have taken neutral position on it. Also it was negotiated without the advice, input or counsel of the NRA and/or ISRA. They don’t like it but it’s “better” than the alternative.

    Raoul’s is basically the same as Phelp’s but without preemption. The NRA and ISRA are against this bill.

    Mason said: “Seems to me the only way to compromise on this would be to specify that firearm regulations only apply to the residences of the homerule community.” Sadly there’s that equal protection under the law thing. So that wouldn’t fly.

  49. - Gray - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 11:39 pm:

    “Both bills are basically “May Issue” any police agency can turn you down for any or no reason.”


    That’s categorically false. Police agencies cannot “turn you down”. The objection language which goes to a board is similar to language in every state surrounding Illinois, including Indiana, Minnesota, Iowa and Missouri.

    The purpose of the objection is where a specific person may have gang-related ties or have some kind of stated mental health concern from law enforcement. It is not the same as may-issue where no one will apply because their “cause” is not good enough. There is no “proper cause” requirement in either the Raoul-Madigan bill (and presumably the Forby bill) or the Phelps-Madigan bill, which means that nearly everyone who applies for a license will get one without any sort of objection at all.

  50. - charles in charge - Thursday, May 30, 13 @ 11:41 pm:

    A couple of refutations of scout26’s “points”:

    1. Neither bill, in its current form, is “may issue.” Denial of a license based on law enforcement objection must be based on a finding by a majority of the Licensing Board that the applicant presents a danger to himself, others, or public safety (not “for any or no reason”–READ the bill, ok?), and the Board’s decision is subject to judicial review.

    2. NRA did have input on Phelps’ bill. They just didn’t get to write it themselves as in the past, mainly because of shenanigans on the part of their lobbyist. It’s true that they didn’t like everything in it. Too bad.

    3. The NRA is getting a big win out of this, and will not be opposed when this gets amended and passes both chambers tomorrow.

  51. - Mr. Wonderful - Friday, May 31, 13 @ 6:04 am:

    Anyone who thinks that this is the end of the concealed carry debate needs to think again. The gun control people are merely shifting their focus and will seek to nullify concealed carry by denying access to the firearms that are most practical to carry. While you all were sleeping, Kotowski was trying to move SB1002 which would render most current “carry” pistols worthless. Bills like SB1002 will become the mainstay of attempts to thwart concealed carry and gun ownership in general as we go down the road.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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