* There’s more react here from before the governor actually vetoed the gun dealer licensing bill. But I’ll be updating this post with react from now on, so check back. First up, Sen. Harmon…
State Senator Don Harmon (D-Oak Park) issued the following statement in response to Gov. Bruce Rauner’s veto of the Gun Dealer Licensing Act:
“The governor must be much more concerned about his immediate political prospects than we thought, because he decided to be a lap dog for the NRA today rather than listen to the people he represents.
“Eighty-five percent of Illinoisans support licensing gun dealers. Governor Rauner has decided to be the governor of the nine percent who don’t.
“Tomorrow, students across the country will stand up and beg elected officials to do their job and protect schools from gun violence. By issuing this veto on the eve of those demonstrations, the governor is telling them that he has no intention to live up to that responsibility.”
The bill passed with just 30 Senate votes and 64 House votes, so I kinda doubt it’ll be overriden. We’ll see.
* Speaking of the walkout…
Senator Melinda Bush will stand in solidarity with students across the country by leading a walkout against gun violence on Wednesday at the Capitol.
“We’re standing in solidarity to honor gun violence victims and let students across Illinois know that their voices matter and that we hear them,” said Bush (D-Grayslake). “The voices of these students have broken though partisan politics, and their actions have brought about commonsense conversations on gun safety.”
Who: Senators, staff, lobbyists, advocates and anyone who wishes to participate. Speakers will include Senator Bush, Senator Chris Nybo (R-Elmhurst) and Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-Chicago)
What: A 20-minute Capitol walkout and short program: 17 minutes for the Parkland victims, one minute for Chicago Police Commander Paul Bauer and two minutes for all victims of gun violence
Where: Participants will walk from east Capitol doors to the Abraham Lincoln statue for the program
When: 10 a.m. Wednesday, March 14
Why: To stand in solidarity with students across the country and in our districts who are calling for honest, bipartisan conversations about gun safety and to honor the victims in Parkland, Commander Paul Bauer and all victims of gun violence
* Gov. Pat Quinn…
Gov. Rauner’s veto of common-sense regulation of Illinois firearms dealers is appalling but not a surprise. Coming one week before our state’s primary election, it’s a reminder of the governor’s abdication of leadership, regardless of the harm done to all Illinois citizens.
I have worked tirelessly, in and out of office, to make our communities safe from gun violence. As Attorney General, I will challenge efforts by the Trump administration to weaken state regulations of firearms. There is no higher or more urgent calling for an office that must be the lawyer for everyday people and the guardian of their well-being.
* According to published reports, the NRA has contributed to Democratic Rep. Sam Yingling in the past and he’s been given an “A” rating. Here’s his statement…
I’m disappointed in Bruce Rauner’s veto of the common-sense gun safety reform measures outlined in SB1657. In a press release following his veto, the governor tried to offer “starting points” for having “serious conversations,” leading me to question whether the governor has been paying attention to the urgent national and local dialogues following the tragedy in Florida.
The conversations I have had with students, mothers, law enforcement officials, and community members in my district over the last few weeks have brought one fact into focus for me: reasonable gun safety measures promote responsible gun ownership and keep our schools and communities safe.
I will continue working with my colleagues in the legislature to send the governor common-sense gun safety bills. I hope he learns to listen to the people in my district and across Illinois who are demanding that we do better when it comes to protecting our children.
* Kathleen Sances, President and CEO of the Illinois Gun Violence Prevention PAC (GPAC)…
“This veto is a punch in the gut to victims of gun violence and their families who dedicated years of their lives to get this bill passed. The Gun Dealer Licensing Act had the potential to save thousands of lives and instead of following suit with cities like the Village of Lyons, which passed its own version of this legislation catching 51 guns in the first year and a half alone, the governor instead decided to stand shoulder to shoulder with the NRA. And now, thousands more lives might be lost because of his inaction.”
* Rep. Scott Drury…
“It is a sad day for Illinois when a governor puts his political interests ahead of the public interest. Yet, in vetoing the Gun Dealer Licensing Act, Governor Rauner did just that. Illinois is in the midst of a gun violence epidemic. The NRA constantly says that criminals – not guns – kill others. The Gun Dealer Licensing Act will keep guns out of the hands of criminals. As a co-sponsor of the Gun Dealer Licensing Act, I know this legislation could save lives. Governor Rauner failed Illinois today.”
* Jesse Ruiz…
Governor Rauner’s veto of the gun measure that would have required the state of Illinois to license gun dealers shows his complete lack of courage and failed leadership. With the number of mass shootings affecting our country, this measure was a step in the right direction by requiring dealers and employees to be trained to conduct background checks, stop thefts, properly store guns and prevent straw purchasing - all urgently needed reforms in Illinois. With the primary election upon us, let’s hope this frustration turns into action at the polls.