News Releases - General Info
Written by Rep. Mike Smiddy   
Friday, 05 April 2013 09:55
PORT BYRON, IL – State Rep. Mike Smiddy (D-Hillsdale) denounced a legislative working group’s recommendations for the state’s concealed carry law on Monday.

Earlier this year, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon invited state senators and representatives from all regions of the state to join her bi-partisan firearms working group to draft recommendations for the state’s expected concealed carry law. The group presented their recommendations, a checklist of criteria, in a letter to the General Assembly.

“I joined the firearms working group to stand up for our Second Amendment rights and serve as a strong voice for law-abiding gun owners in Illinois,” said Smiddy. “Unfortunately, the group’s final recommendations look like typical gun control tactics, which I cannot support. I have not signed on to the firearms working group’s letter, and I will continue to work in a bipartisan manner to pass a law that doesn’t punish responsible gun owners.”

Smiddy argues that the group’s recommendations, which include comprehensive background checks and the designation of gun-free zones, place overly burdensome restrictions on gun owners. Other recommendations, such as denying carry permits to anyone appearing to pose a risk or danger to others, are vague. Smiddy believes the state law must set out clear standards of eligibility for a concealed carry permit, not create a system where every county’s rules are different and upstanding citizens can be turned away because of personal or subjective judgments.

“Giving permits only to people determined by some ambiguous definition to not pose a risk leaves the door wide open to deny a permit to virtually anyone and everyone,” Smiddy said. “A concealed carry law is worthless if it’s so watered down that no one can understand it or if only a fraction of law-abiding gun owners can carry legally. While I strongly disagree with my working group colleagues on the group’s final recommendations, I appreciate their efforts and their willingness to join the conversation. We must work together in a constructive way to craft a concealed carry law that make sense and is fair.”

Smiddy is co-sponsoring House Bill 997, a concealed carry bill that respects the rights of law-abiding gun owners. The bill is awaiting a debate by the full House. For more information, contact Smiddy’s office at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , (309) 848-9098, or toll free at (855) 243-4988.

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