Following last month's tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut, Illinois legislators are hurrying to crack down on guns, despite opposition from groups like the National Rifle Association. On their first day back for the General Assembly's last week of session, Senate Democrats sent two gun control measures to the floor. IPR's Amanda Vinicky reports:
One proposal forbids new sales of magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition. The National Rifle Association's Todd Vandermyde doesn't like that gun-owners who currently own those magazines would have to register them with the state police.
"In order for me to keep my existing property I have to get treated like a sexual predator and register myself and my belongings with the state police. I have to pay a tax to keep the existing magazines that I already have. And it looks like I'll never ever be able to replace them or repair them if one of them goes foul."
The NRA is also opposed to the other measure, which is intended to ban assault weapons. But Vandermyde says the legislation is written in such a broad manner, it would outlaw other popular guns, too. But supporters say reducing the availability of assault weapons will prevent Illinois from being the next state to face a mass shooting, like the one that killed 26 people at a Connecticut school last month. Supporters are trying to get them through both chambers before January 9th, when the current session of the General Assembly adjourns for good and new members take over.
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