Gun rights advocates in Winnebago County, Ill., have launched an effort to change the state law that prohibits the concealed carrying of firearms.
According to the Chicago Tribune
, two hearings have been scheduled by county officials to consider a proposed ordinance that would allow gun owners with proper training to carry a concealed weapon.
However, Winnebago County state's attorney Joseph Bruscato, who supports the proposed ordinance, has advised his fellow supporters that it would likely never hold up in court because it breaks a state statute.
“Despite my personal views, I cannot give bad legal advice,” Bruscato said, according to the Tribune. “This ordinance would not be upheld.”
Illinois is the only state that still bans the carrying of concealed weapons. But gun rights supporters in Winnebago County believe that could change over time if the county is successful in establishing its own concealed carry law. The proposed ordinance was written after county officials received a petition pushing for it that contained more than 11,000 signatures from county residents.
Despite Bruscato's warning, County board member Jim Webster, a long-time member of the National Rifle Association, said that ultimately the case would be decided on the basis of the Second Amendment.
“Our founding fathers weren’t wimps,” said Webster, who wrote the proposed ordinance. “They knew what they were doing when they wrote the Second Amendment.”
The drive in Winnebago County to defy the Illinois ban actually began last summer when tea party activists started the petition drive at a local gun shop.
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