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Illinois Gov. Wants Statewide Assault Weapon Ban over Chicago Violence

Illinois Gov. Wants Statewide Assault Weapon Ban over Chicago Violence

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn (D) is supporting statewide “restrictions” on .50 caliber rifles and bans on “assault weapon” and “high capacity” magazines because of the violence in heavily gun-controlled Chicago.

According to, Quinn voiced support for the Illinois Public Safety Act (Senate Bill 3659) on July 13 after reports of “50 people injured” in the latest example of Chicago violence. 

Quinn is justifying the gun control push by citing numbers from Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG). 

MAIG claims “incidents were assault weapons or large capacity magazines were used resulted in 135 percent more people shot and 57 percent more killed, compared to other mass shootings.” However, Chicago violence is no the result of “mass shootings” but of gang violence. Additionally, the scholarly work of Northeastern University criminology professor James Alan Fox shows that “mass murderers rarely use assault weapons.”

Moreover, the .50 cal restrictions contained in SB 3659 have no basis in reality. The .50 cal is far too large a weapon for gangs or criminals to use effectively, and has yet to be reported as used in a crime. 

Nevertheless, Governor Quinn said: “Public safety is the government’s foremost mission and Illinois should not wait any longer to act.”

Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at


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