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NewsMcCombie on anti-gun bill: ‘The constitutionality of the bill will certainly go before the courts’

December 15, 2022

House Minority Leader Tony McCombie is calling out the unconstitutionality of sweeping legislation critics have said will outlaw many of the guns currently legally held by Illinoisans.

HB5855 would effectively criminalize ownership of entire classes of firearms by Illinoisans.

“While HB 5855 is likely far from in its final form, the constitutionality of the bill will certainly go before the courts,” McCombie, whose leadership is facing its first test, told Prairie State Wire.

“The bill sponsor’s intent to reduce gun crimes is commendable, but there is no language in the bill that addresses violence prevention nor the growing mental health crisis in Illinois.”

McCombie sits on the Rules Committee which will see debate of the bill in three public hearings on Dec 12, 14 and 19.

The Rules Committee is comprised of McCombie and fellow GOP member state representatives Dave Severin, Chris Bos, David Friess, Amy Grant, Deanne Mazzochi and Patrick Windhorst as well as Democrat majority led by Chairperson Justin Slaughter and Vice Chairperson Kelly Cassidy and including state representatives Kambium Buckner, Edgar Gonzalez Jr., Will Guzzardi, Delia Ramirez, Anne Stava-Murray, Denyse Wang Stoneback, Dave Vella, Maurice West II, Kathleen Willis and Michael Zalewski.

HB5855 would make the possession of several types of firearms and accessories illegal.

“Makes it unlawful to manufacture, deliver, sell, or purchase or cause to be manufactured, delivered, sold, or purchased or cause to be possessed by another, an assault weapon, assault weapon attachment, .50 caliber rifle, or .50 caliber cartridge. Makes it unlawful for any person to knowingly possess an assault weapon, .50 caliber rifle, or .50 caliber cartridge 300 days after the effective date of the amendatory Act, except possession of weapons registered with the Illinois State Police in the time provided. Provides exemptions and penalties. Prohibits the manufacture, delivery, sale, purchase, or possession of large capacity ammunition feeding devices,” the bill’s synopsis reads in part.

It has picked up over 20 Democrat co-sponsors since being filed.

The Illinois State Rifle Association and others have vowed to pursue legal action if the legislation passes.

“Anti-2nd Amendment politicians in Springfield have filed HB5855 with the full support of the most anti-gun Governor this state has ever seen, Gov. Pritzker,” ISRA Executive Director Richard Pearson said in an email.

“The proposed legislation, which they hope to vote on in early January, would ban certain semi-automatic pistols, rifles, and shotguns along with any magazine that has a capacity of greater than 10 rounds including any magazine for your handguns. While technically they are not coming for your kids, the Government believes they know best and will not allow any person under 21 to have a FOID card unless they are in the military.”

Dan Eldridge, of gun dealers’ association Federal Firearms Licensees of Illinois, is warning HB5855 would criminalize ordinary Illinoisans.

“I would say it’s somewhere between two and 10 million magazines, and it’s a massive impact,” Eldridge told The Center Square.

“These are the standard magazines that come with a duty-sized pistol even, they’re the standard magazines that come with a rifle. These are not aftermarket extended capacity magazines.” “With an immediate effective date, mere possession of a, and I’m not going to use their words, I’m going to use accurate words, mere possession of a standard-capacity magazine is a crime. There’s no getting around that. So you’ve got Second Amendment issues. You’ve got Fourth Amendment issues. You’ve got Fourteenth Amendment issues. You can’t do this.”

Read more on Prairie State Wire

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A copy of our report filed with the State Board of Elections is (or will be) available on the Board’s official website (www.elections.il.gov) or for purchase from the State Board of Elections, Springfield, Illinois.

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