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Legislature should accept changes to gun bill


Pat Quinn

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Updated: August 4, 2013 6:24AM

So a man packing 10 guns, some peeking out of his jacket, goes into a restaurant and gets drunk and boisterous. Good idea?

Only as a set-up in a Quentin Tarantino movie.

Using the power of his amendatory veto, Gov. Pat Quinn on Tuesday deleted the provisions that would allow for such a scenario from a bill that passed the Legislature in May to legalize the concealed carrying of guns. He also edited out other troubling measures.

Quinn wants to limit the number of concealed guns to one — and require that one be fully concealed. He would limit the amount of ammunition to 10 rounds. He doesn’t want guns in businesses that serve liquor, and thinks hidden guns shouldn’t be permitted on private property without the owner’s prior consent, or at work. The governor also crossed out a provision that the National Rifle Association always tries to sneak into legislation — stripping local governments of the power to write their own gun laws. This bill would ban local governments from banning assault rifles, for example, something that has nothing to do with concealed carrying. In all, Quinn asked for nine changes.

We think most people would agree with Quinn. Some, including Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart, think he should have gone farther. But for the Legislature to sustain Quinn’s veto, 19 votes in the House or 10 in the Senate must change. That’s a tall order.

Bill Daley criticized Quinn on Tuesday for not orchestrating these changes when the bill was working its way through the Legislature. But it was a back-room deal that emerged in the session’s last days. The one-sided final vote revealed what an uphill climb Quinn faced.

Quinn has a political motive for resisting concealed carry. It’s a popular position in Cook County, home of many of the primary election voters he will need in 2014.

But Quinn also is right that this bill has some terrible features. It’s the longest of long shots, but we hope lawmakers finally pay attention to that.

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