Shooting could drive Ill. gun debate, or muddy it
SPRINGFIELD – In a state where the gun rights debate was already accelerating, top Illinois Democrats responded Monday to the nation’s latest mass shooting with demands for a ban on assault weapons, but other lawmakers cautioned against letting passions and a mixing of issues cloud negotiations over concealed carry and other gun matters.
The elementary school shooting Friday in Newtown, Conn., which left 28 people dead, came days after gun advocates celebrated a federal appeals court ruling that Illinois’ concealed-carry ban is unconstitutional. Neither event dislodged deep-rooted beliefs on either side of the issue, but gun control advocates cited the shooting to push for restrictions.
Gov. Pat Quinn and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, both Democrats, announced support for banning assault-style weapons despite how legislators in Springfield handed Quinn a resounding defeat on the issue last month.
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