The Illinois House of Representatives has postponed voting on the concealed carry bill, although a House committee passed the bill on Tuesday.
State Rep. Jim Sacia, R-Pecatonica, a sponsor of the bill, said the legislation needed 71 yes votes to be approved by the House on May 5, but only received 65. Even so, the bill did get enough support to qualify for “postponed consideration,” which means it will likely be voted on again soon, Sacia said.
“It will come back up in May,” Sacia said, adding that he has been an ardent supporter of the proposed law. “I spoke passionately in favor of the bill, citing my 30 years in law enforcement, which has convinced me it is the right thing to do.”
If approved, House Bill 148 would allow county sheriffs across Illinois to issue permits to carry concealed firearms to state residents who are at least 21 years of age and who meet certain requirements. Among other things, the bill requires applicants to complete extensive training, including classroom instruction and live firing exercises, and to submit to a criminal background.
Illinois and Wisconsin are the only two states in the U.S. that do not allow some form of concealed carry. Wisconsin is working on similar legislation.
The history of modern concealed carry in the Unites States started with Georgia. In 1976 that state’s governor, Zell Miller, introduced what became the model for laws in most states. But it took over ten years for the another state to pass similar legislation. Florida passed the legislation, despite dire predictions from most law enforcement agencies.
The fight was tough, but the legislation was passed by the Florida State Legislature in 1987. The dire Predictions? In 1989, the president of the police chiefs association, who had opposed the bill, was asked if he had kept track of all the problems the law caused. “There aren’t any,” was his answer.
That cleared the way for Constitutional Carry movements throughout the U.S. CHLs swept through Oregon, Pennsylvania and West Virginia in 1989; Idaho and Mississippi in 1990; Montana in 1991; and Alaska, Arizona, Tennessee and Wyoming in 1994. Then came 1995, with Arkansas, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Texas, Nevada, Utah, and Virginia. In 1996 Kentucky, Louisiana, and South Carolina passed CHL laws.
Now Florida is now positioned to become the first state in the nation to prohibit physicians from asking patients if they have guns in their homes, a move some doctors say will interfere with health care.
The Florida Senate passed House Bill 155 last month by a 27-10 vote and the measure now awaits the signature of Republican Gov. Rick Scott. If signed, it would ban doctors from asking about the presence of guns or ammunition in the home.
Republican State Rep. Jason Brodeur, a sponsor of the bill, proposed the legislation following an incident in which a Florida pediatrician told a mother to find another doctor when she refused to answer questions about guns in her home.
State by State Concealed Carry Information