Illinois Governor Lists Gun Stores as ‘Essential,’ Exempts Them from Forced Shutdown

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker announces that three more people have died in the state from from Covid-19 virus, two Illinois residents and one woman visiting from Florida, during a news conference Thursday, March 19, 2020, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
Charles Rex Arbogast/AP Photo

When Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) issued an executive order Friday to put a statewide shutdown in place, he exempted gun and ammunition stores by labeling them “essential.”

The order, titled “Executive Order in Response to COVID-19 (COVID-19 Executive Order No. 8),” contains various headings, under which are listings of businesses considered “essential” for day-to-day life. Under the heading, “Supplies for Essential Businesses and Operations,” the order makes clear that “firearm and ammunition suppliers and retailers” can remain open, noting that they serve the purposes of “safety and security.”

The Second Amendment Foundation’s Alan Gottlieb reacted to Pritzker’s recognition of the “essential” nature of firearms to the American life by saying, “When an anti-gun Democrat Governor declares that essential businesses includes firearm and ammunition suppliers and retailers for purposes of safety and security, that is really a big deal. Every Governor should copy the Illinois example when issuing stay in place and business closure orders in the face of the Corona Virus.”

The businesses not listed as “essential” will be closing at 5 p.m. on March 21, 2020, per the Executive Order.

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkinsa weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him at awrhawkins@breitbart.com. You can sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange.

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