This evening, Governor Pritzker signed HB-5471 into law. With an immediate effective date, it impacts gun stores and gun owners alike rather dramatically.
Here’s the quick and dirty rundown.
- Bans America’s favorite rifle, the AR-15 and millions more like it – pretty much all semi-auto centerfire rifles. Class 3 Felony for the first one, Class 2 for subsequent. Unless you register them as an existing owner and get a FOID endorsement within 300 days.
After 90 days, you can take them anywhere you want, so long as it’s on your property.
Yes, there’s language about “licensed ranges” but there is no such animal in Illinois.
- Bans pretty much all semi auto shotguns. Bans more than a few hot-selling defensive handguns too.
Unless you register them – shotguns and handguns too. Again, you can use registered guns anywhere, so long as it’s on your property after 90 days following enactment.
- Bans magazines over 10 rounds for rifles, 15 for handguns. 90 days to get rid of them or to get the endorsement to your FOID card.
After 90 days, you’re very limited where you can use them and they must be transported unloaded and encased. $1000 fines for each one for violations.
- Bans .50 BMGs, including ammunition unless you register. Got a cartridge: Class A misdemeanor.
- Got parts that can make your gun shoot faster… bump stock, forced reset triggers, binary triggers for example, each of those are good for a Class 2 felony.
- Parts: like telescoping stock, thumbhole stock, flash suppressor, a forward grip, grenade or flare launcher is a Class 4 felony for the first item and Class 3 for subsequent.
Again: Effective immediately!
WHERE WE’RE AT TO FIGHT THIS…
Guns Save Life has joined a coalition of key groups, law firms and individuals here in Illinois to counter this bill. These include the Illinois House Freedom Caucus, FFL-IL, the Aurora Sportsmen’s Club, law firms, the Second Amendment Law Center and others. And Todd Vandermyde. We’re going to fight this not in the General Assembly but in the courts.
We didn’t get concealed carry by pleading and lobbying for thirty-plus years. We got it in court.
We didn’t block the SAFE-T Act’s No Cash Bail provisions by lobbying and pleading. Our side blocked it in court.
And we don’t stand a prayer of blocking this latest gun and magazine ban with lobbying. But we’ll kill it in court.
Guns Save Life has already identified about a dozen potential individual plaintiffs. These include some guy by the name of Darren Bailey. Yeah, you might recognize the name.
Our coalition has already retained not one, but two law firms here in Illinois to file a lawsuit in federal court. Our original plan was to file within hours of the Governor signing a gun and magazine ban bill, but then again, we expected it wouldn’t happen until next week. We believe in quality filings over quick filings, so we’re probably still going to file next week.
Then we’ll file at least one and probably more follow-on lawsuits in the days or weeks afterwards to keep up the publicity nightmare for the governor and those who voted for this patently unconstitutional bill.
Our coalition is days away with signing a retainer agreement with the Second Amendment Law Center our of California to backstop our Illinois legal teams. Chuck Michele’s group and his law firm have experience beating California’s mag and semi-auto bans – even before Bruen came down last summer. Now, with Bruen, their firm is busy on a host of fronts in a host of states and we’re going to be adding Illinois to that mix in the coming days.
There are other things happening behind the scenes that represent some great news for GSL and gun owners. More as those things get confirmed and deals inked.
WHAT YOU CAN DO.
First, you can join Guns Save Life.
We’re at the tip of the spear fighting this move against our fundamental constitutional right to keep and bear arms. Having a bigger membership base helps a whole lot. Our members prove themselves exceptional people constantly and we work hard to take good care of them. And clearly, GSL joining this coalition to present an even stronger unified front to this gun grab that will impact the great majority of gun owners in our state has us working overtime and then some to serve them in this fight.
Yes, we’re altruistic in our advocacy and serve our members, not the other way around. As an example, unlike at least one organization, we negotiated a 15% discount for our members who sign up with US Concealed Carry Association instead of taking a 40% commission on all sales to our membership. Our members are a big part of what makes GSL so influential and keeps us going strong. If we can help them save money, we’ll do it. And our recommendations and endorsements as an organization and its leadership are not for sale.
Secondly, you can donate to our coalition’s legal defense funds.
We’ve retained two legal teams here in the Land of Lincoln already to handle the coming lawsuits (plural). To help fund our local counsel, our coalition has agreed to steer everyone to the FFL-IL organization’s legal defense fund. It’s not perfect, but time is of the essence ad the FFL-IL’s leadership, including its head Dan Eldridge of Maxon’s, assures us that all donations will be exclusively earmarked for our Illinois legal fight. I TRUST DAN ELDRIDGE on this, and you should too. This one is not tax deductible.
At our board meeting at the end of January, I’m guessing GSL the organization will likely donate something approaching $20,000 to this FFL-IL Illinois fund.
GSL is a small organization that gets big, proven results. But we know this is a big battle, and that’s why we’re working shoulder to shoulder with other aggressive groups, clubs and organizations to stop this huge attack on our right to defend ourselves and our families. To put that $20,000 from GSL into perspective, as a part of our annual income, that would be the equivalent of the Illinois State Rifle Association putting over $250,000 of their organization’s money towards this lawsuit. Or the National Rifle Association writing a check for over $40 million.
You can donate here:
To help with the California-based legal team backstopping our Illinois counsel, you can make a TAX DEDUCTIBLE donation here:
Or you can send a check to Gun Save Life (PO Box 51, Savoy, IL 61874). Mark “legal defense fund” in the memo and we’ll forward it to either FFL-IL or the Second Amendment Law Center, whichever legal fund needs it more desperately.
*ALL* monies donated will go to attorneys. We’re not sending out fundraising letters or requests for attorney’s fees only to co-mingle that money with our operating funds or even a separate bank account and while letting someone else pay the bills. Yeah, that happens elsewhere, but not here and not in our coalition.
What’s more, we’re not hiring any professional fundraisers.
Not only that but our attorneys are giving us a discounted hourly rate because we’re non-profits and because they’re hungry for these cases because they are resume enhancers for them. Not every law firm gets to run landmark civil rights cases.
Thirdly, if your employer offers matching gifts for donations to charities, you can use that to double (or triple) your impact with the Second Amendment Law Center. They are a 501c3 charity and donations are tax deductible (and eligible for most companies to match donations where offered).
Fourthly, if you belong to a shooting range or a gun club, I would encourage you to reach out to their leadership and encourage them to get involved. Attend their next board meeting and ask leadership to make a serious contribution to legal defense funds and/or hold a fundraiser among the membership. After all, this proposed gun legislation will effectively ban most semi-autos in our state, seriously handicapping all of us when it comes to defending ourselves, our loved ones and other innocent life.
Lastly, encourage any gun businesses you know – retailers, manufacturers, etc. – to get onboard with this. Encourage them to post flyers to educate customers and encourage them to get involved (and donate to the legal battles ahead). Also, encourage them to write a check themselves. After all, if this legislation isn’t stopped, there will be a whole lot fewer guns and accessories sold. And frankly, a whole lot fewer gun stores.