Pritzker pushes for nationwide gun ban while Illinois’ law challenged in courts



(The Center Square) – With Illinois’ gun and magazine ban being challenged in a case expected to go to the U.S. Supreme Court, Gov. J.B. Pritzker says there needs to be a federal ban.

On the one-year anniversary of the Independence Day parade shooting in Highland Park Tuesday, Pritzker said there needs to be more gun control.

“We’ve banned assault weapons. We’ve banned high capacity magazines. We’ve banned switches that turn regular guns into automatic weapons and here in Illinois those are things that will keep people safe and alive, but we need a national ban,” Pritzker said.

The White House Wednesday highlighted Illinois’ law as what the Biden administration would like to see nationwide.

Todd Vandermyde, who’s consulting plaintiffs in the challenge to Illinois’ ban, said more gun control won’t make the streets safer. He said the governor’s other policies are “an abject failure.”

“They don’t go after the criminals. ‘Oh no, we’re going to give them electric home monitoring. Oh no, we’re going to let them go out for 48 hours. Oh no, we’re not going to require cash bail,’” Vandermyde told The Center Square, referring to the state’s latest changes to the criminal justice system.

Just in Chicago, violent crime has risen 86% over the past two years, and 56% over the past four.

To the consolidated lawsuit challenging the state’s gun and magazine ban, Pritzker said he’s “heartened” after last week’s hearing in the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. The governor cited some of the judges’ questions focused on whether the issue is a “popularity contest which guns we’re going to allow.”

“Because the people who were advocating for semi-automatic weapons were saying ‘well gee, everybodies got one now, so you can’t ban them.’ Well that’s ridiculous,” Pritzker said. “If everyone had a missile launcher, we shouldn’t ban missile launchers?”

Vandermyde said the case isn’t about missile launchers.

“They just keep jumping to the absurd that if you allow rifles, shotguns and pistols then you have to allow all this other stuff. And nobody is arguing [that], that’s not even before the court in any way,” Vandermyde said.

If the law is upheld, Illinoisans who own certain semi-automatic firearms obtained before the ban will have to register them with state police by Jan. 1, or face criminal penalties.

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