Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a measure that bans not only such weapons, but also high-capacity ammunition magazines -- you know, because criminals so pay attention to such laws.
As reported by CBS News:
The legislation took effect immediately with Pritzker's signature.
Before signing the bill, Gov. Pritzker raised the memory of the July 4th parade massacre in Highland Park last year – which left seven people dead and 36 injured, and left a 2-year-old boy parentless and wandering around.
The shooter used a legally-purchased semiautomatic weapon. Pritzker said the massacre was allowed to happen "all because our state and our nation have been held hostage by the NRA and their allies time and time again.
Thugs using handguns shoot and kill scores of people on a daily basis in Chicago, but Pritzker and his ruling Democratic Party can't be bothered with that.
"After nearly every mass shooting, we've seen efforts to ban dangerous weapons thwarted – and then leaders send their thoughts and prayers, while they throw their hands up – resigning themselves to the idea that gun violence is a sacrifice that Americans must accept," Pritzker said. "But it doesn't have to be that way."
The authoritarian governor whined that he and the Democrat-controlled state General Assembly have been trying to pass this kind of overly restrictive gun legislation for years with only modest success, but the banning of the class of rifles now outlawed, as well as the high-capacity magazines, had been unattainable before.
"Gun violence is an epidemic that is plaguing every corner of this state and the people of Illinois are demanding substantive action. With this legislation we are delivering on the promises Democrats have made and, together, we are making Illinois' gun laws a model for the nation," House Speaker Emanuel "Chris" Welch, Senate President Don Harmon, and Gov. Pritzker said in an earlier joint statement Monday night after majority Democrats approved the measure.
It should be said that this legislation was passed in a lame-duck session, just ahead of new members being sworn in -- again, typical behavior from Democrats.
But it's not at all clear the law will stand: Federal courts have already struck down similar legislation in other states, and the current Supreme Court is one of the most Second Amendment-friendly in a century.
"Those already owning guns on the assault weapons list will be allowed to keep them, but would have to register them with the Illinois State Police. It would still be legal for current owners to possess such weapons on their own private property, at gun ranges, in designated hunting areas, and in other locations," CBS News reported (the word "allowed" was italicized for a reason since our founders never intended for government to "allow" citizens to exercise the rights recognized in the Constitution).
Republicans were the realists during debate, noting that criminals are just that, criminals, and laws mean nothing to them.
"People who break the law, people who commit violent crime are not going to register their firearms, are not going to turn in their magazines. This will not stop that crime. What will happen is law-abiding gun owners will be yet again impacted by laws in this General Assembly, yet again have their Second Amendment rights restrained," Illinois State Rep. Patrick Windhorst (R-Metropolis) said during Tuesday's debate, according to CBS News.
Some Republicans were outright defiant.
"We will not comply, and you're not going to do a darn thing about it, because the law, the Constitution, and the founding principles are on our side," said Illinois State Rep. Blaine Wilhour (R-Beecher City).