SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — The Illinois Senate passed their version of an assault weapon ban Monday evening.
The bill is different from the Illinois House of Representatives’ bill that was voted on Thursday. Some differences include raising the legal magazine size for handguns from 10 to 15, requiring currently owned guns to be registered with Illinois State Police and banning switches and any other modifications to increase the firing rate on a firearm.
“Gun violence has been normalized,” Sen. Julie Morrison (D-Lake Forest) said. “And we have the power and I would say the responsibility to put our constituents ahead of the gun lobby, politics and profit.”
Republicans derided the bill, arguing banning one type of gun won’t stop shootings.
“Semi-automatic firearms are already outlawed in Highland Park, so it didn’t stop that shooting even as tragic as it was.” Sen. Terri Bryant (R-Murphysboro) said. “This is basically an appalling attempt to disregard Second Amendment rights for people of this state.”
Senate President Don Harmon (D-Oak Park) invoked the second amendment in his closing statement and dismissed the critics who said the bill was unconstitutional.
“The right of the people to keep and bear arms is intended to produce a secure state,” he said “We do not have a secure state. Too many people are dying from gun violence.”
Harmon, Illinois Speaker of the House Chris Welch, and Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker released a joint statement, saying they are all in agreement with this Senate bill.
“After continued negotiations between the leaders, stakeholders and advocates, we have reached a deal on one of the strongest assault weapons bans in the country,” the joint statement reads. “Gun violence is an epidemic that is plaguing every corner of this state and the people of Illinois are demanding substantive action. With this legislation we are delivering on the promises Democrats have made and, together, we are making Illinois’ gun laws a model for the nation.”
The Illinois House of Representatives will take up the bill for a vote Tuesday. Once signed into law, the ban on the sale and delivery of assault weapons will immediately go into effect. Serialization for currently owned weapons would not be effective immediately.