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“Fix the FOID” stalls in Senate

Saturday, Jun 1, 2019 - Posted by Rich Miller

* The quiet failure of the “Fix the FOID” bill in the Senate caught some off guard. That chamber, with its 40 Democrats, is not exactly known as a gun-lovers paradise

(T)he legislation faced strong opposition, with detractors calling the proposed new regulations among the most “onerous” in the nation and an infringement on their constitutional rights. […]

On Friday, Democrat Julie Morrison, the Senate sponsor of the bill, spoke strongly in support of it but said she ran out of time to explain to fellow senators the significant changes it proposed. […]

Kathleen Sances, president of the Gun Violence Prevention PAC, which was involved in drafting the legislation, is holding out hope the proposal will come for a vote before the Senate at a later date.

“We’re really thrilled that we were able to get the bill out of the House, and I really have to give credit to Rep. (Kathleen) Willis,” Sances said of the bill’s House sponsor. “We ran out of time in the Senate. … So moving forward we’ll just be talking with both chambers and we’ll see what we can do to get enough votes to pass it in the Senate.”

The Illinois State Rifle Association was ready to deal on this topic and has a bill to address it. The Democrats could’ve had a bipartisan proposal to address the FOID issue, but they went their own way in the House and it apparently spooked the Senate Democrats, who aren’t normally spooked. That caucus will pass just about anything.

* Related…

* Ammons’ ‘Democrat judge’ bill on pause in state Senate: “HB 97 is a piece of legislation that can start the very real conversation about diversity on the judicial benches of downstate Illinois,” Koehler said. “I do not plan on running this legislation this session. I look forward to having conversations this summer with (Supreme Court) Justice Tom Kilbride and others about the best path forward.”


  1. - wordslinger - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:10 pm:

    That was a surprise. Maybe with everything else going on, it was just one long-debate too many at this time.

  2. - Rich Miller - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:12 pm:

    ===Maybe with everything else going on===

    The Senate sat around doing nothing for hours yesterday.

  3. - Not a Billionaire - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:17 pm:

    It would make them like the only state legislative bodies concerned about the constitutionality of their actions. Look at all the abortion and cell meat laws.

  4. - MaryLouise - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:34 pm:

    If you find a need to change judicial circuits for diversity on the bench, then senate and house districts need to be redrawn to represent all the people and not just one party as is the case in IL now.
    How diverse is a legislature where only one party has a vote?

    I did research too. Who was the Presiding Judge that wrote a letter on behalf of Mr. Ammon’s pardon? Short memory when criticizing someone.

  5. - revvedup - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:36 pm:

    There was little public support for the bill, given the 3 House Amendments garnered 28,923 witness slips in opposition, versus 2,832 in support. Perhaps the Senate Dems paid attention to this factor, unlike their House counterparts.

  6. - Rich Miller - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:40 pm:

    ===28,923 witness slips in opposition, versus 2,832 in support===

    The only thing that means is the opposition had a better social media campaign.

  7. - PrairieDog - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:43 pm:

    I like how the photo accompanying the linked Tribune story, and all other accounts of the May 22 “Fix the FOID” rally are close ups showing maybe a dozen attendees, and the story makes no reference to total attendance.

  8. - revvedup - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 12:59 pm:

    Rich, I respectfully disagree, because it is more than social media campaign strength in play. If all the supporters (who also have groups with social media campaigns) bothered to submit slips, the numbers would not be as lopsided. I agree it was not the sole factor in the Senate not calling the bill in committee.

    To PrarieDog: I’m amazed the Tribune didn’t hype the attendance, having anti-2nd Amendment editors and columnists.

  9. - Shall not be infringed - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 1:04 pm:

    >>> the story makes no reference to total attendance.

    They had about 35 people in all, including the organizers, vs 6500 for IGOLD

  10. - FFS - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 1:06 pm:

    ==Maybe with everything else going on, it was just one long-debate too many at this time.==

    It’s also possible that those other issues, such as marijuana legalization made some take a closer look at the FOID bills impact on persons such as medical marijuana users. A provision of the FOID bill required all transactions, including private transactions, to be processed by a federal firearms licensed dealer, essentially preventing med marijuana patients from being able to transfer any firearms. Just one of many issues that made for strange bedfellows with that bill.

  11. - Shall not be infringed - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 1:10 pm:

    I think somebody must have put the brakes on Morrison and Willis with this bill, it would have been a long senate floor debate, and if it passed, they would have really poked the bear this time.

    For decades pro-gun forces have wished they could fuse gun owners together and get them to vote as a bloc :-) This bill would have done it.

    I hear the Morrison already was taken to the woodshed once this session for her “if you lose your FOID then you lose your IL Driver’s License” bill.

  12. - The Dude Abides - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 1:15 pm:

    I feel pretty confident that they can get a a FOID improvement bill passed in the fall. They just need to hear out some downstate Republicans and make a couple modifications and go from there.

  13. - Change Agent - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 1:20 pm:

    Here’s another theory on that witness slip disparity. The opposition consists mostly of zealous people who are paranoid that “the government” is coming to take their guns away, fueled by funding from the corporate gun lobby.

    While the majority of Illinoisans support policies like Fix the FOID, many also care about things like preserving reproductive rights, ending the war on drugs, ensuring a livable wage, adopting a fair tax, paying for social services for the most vulnerable, etc., etc. Perhaps we progressives were spread a little thin this session.

  14. - Shall not be infringed - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 1:34 pm:

    Change Agent’s zealots are my freedom fighters.

  15. - oh? - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 1:48 pm:

    Seems like there really is little correlation between gun violence and legitimate FOID card holding. The zealots keep pushing this edge and there is a strong chance all of FOID requiements are ruled unconstitutional by this SCOTUS

  16. - Donnie Elgin - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 2:04 pm:

    The FOID bill was tee’d up like never before - major revision needed to get downstate support.

  17. - FFS - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 2:18 pm:

    ==The zealots keep pushing this edge and there is a strong chance all of FOID requiements are ruled unconstitutional by this SCOTUS==

    There’s actually very little chance of that with the current FOID laws, but you’re free to think that. If this bill had become law that would be a different discussion. But it didn’t. Or at least hasn’t yet.

  18. - oh? - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 2:41 pm:

    FTS, read some of Clarence Thomas’s writing on the issue. Bear in mind, he has the ear of the conservative majority. Give him an excuse to intervene and he may take off on it.

  19. - oh? - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 2:46 pm:

    and you,FTS, are free to think what you want too.

  20. - FFS - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 2:48 pm:

    ==FTS, read some of Clarence Thomas’s writing on the issue. Bear in mind, he has the ear of the conservative majority. Give him an excuse to intervene and he may take off on it.==

    He’s one of 9 members, and isn’t a controlling voice by any stretch. All of the other members have at various times upheld fees that impose minimal burdens on rights, as the current law does. Challenging the law in its current form would be a massive waste of money. But feel free to ask for your nra dues to be wasted on a losing cause.

  21. - oh? - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 3:04 pm:

    You display your assumptions. I loathe the NRA. Mine was a caution…don’t poke a bear. Any more ad hominem arguements?

  22. - Jocko - Saturday, Jun 1, 19 @ 7:03 pm:

    ==Seems like there really is little correlation between gun violence and legitimate FOID card holding.==

    How do you know the FOID ownership is legit without fingerprints…because they checked a box on the form? Gary Martin (in Aurora) would’ve been in the clear had he not provided his fingerprints to speed up his CCW

  23. - Eric - Sunday, Jun 2, 19 @ 8:05 am:

    For the first time ever, I filed an opposition slip to this and contacted both my reps regarding SB 1966. My house rep voted in favor and if she has opposition in the next election you can bet I will be backing them to remove her. This bill is a terrible insult to all law abiding citizens and will fix none of our current problems with gang banger violence. Glad it stalled but we will be waiting for the next assault.

  24. - Oh? - Sunday, Jun 2, 19 @ 9:52 am:

    Jocko….I have no problem with fingerprints at all. My problem is the fee hike. I don’t think gun owners should have to exclusively pay for enforcement. If it matters, my prints are on file, retired teacher. For perspective, I had Gary Martin in class.

  25. - Oh? - Sunday, Jun 2, 19 @ 10:55 am:

    Perhaps I haven’t explained myself. I am all for vigorous requirements and enforcement for FOID and CCW. Even though it is doubtful we will see a reduction in crime. But this fee onus is based upon guilt by association…nothing less.

  26. - Elmer Keith - Sunday, Jun 2, 19 @ 12:39 pm:

    “The Illinois State Rifle Association was ready to deal on this topic and has a bill to address it.” Richard Pearson & ISRA are always ready to capitulate and sell out their own members. When NRA & ISRA had the entire weight of the U.S. Federal court behind them with the McDonald v. Chicago Supreme Court decision in 2010, and then Moore v. Madigan, all they did was slobber all over themselves negotiating with anti-gun police unions to place the worst provisions they could in Brandon Phelps concealed carry bill: no public transit carry, because ISRA members drive everywhere, criminal penalties for every violation, because “the police are on our side” and Duty to Inform, because what licensed citizen wouldn’t want to be blown away like Philando Castile in Minnesota?

    Watching Richard Pearson, Valinda Rowe and Todd Vandermyde try to play ball with Speaker Madigan is like watching a team of pygmies try to play ball with the Bears at Soldier Field. If fix the FOID passes in the fall, that gives Pearson job security to challenge it. ISRA & NRA don’t want to win, they would be out of a job.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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