Thursday, June 6, 2013

30 more days for ‘concealed carry’ not big deal, no matter what ‘gun nuts’ say

The Court of Appeals that ordered Illinois to have a “concealed carry” law in place by Sunday is managing to offend the conservative interests that want the law – for reasons that go a long way toward showing their motivations in the first place.

A judicial panel issued a stay of its Sunday deadline (180 days from when it issued its original order that the Illinois Legislature enact something resembling a “concealed carry” law), saying the state can now have another 30 days.

ALTHOUGH THE COURT made a point of saying, “no further extensions” will be granted. So July 9 is IT in terms of the deadline.

This bothers the firearms advocates, who probably already were planning the parties to celebrate the enactment of the law they have long desired – even if it is a compromise measure that doesn’t come close to the mentality they wanted enacted into Illinois law against the will of the majority of the state’s population.

I’ve been reading a lot of Internet commentary (all anonymous, of course) from people who say that 180 days was enough time, and that they just want something imposed now!

Not that it means anything – except that some people really don’t understand the way government works. Either that, or they want government to be some sort of authoritarian state that always rules in their favor – or more accurately, against anyone who disagrees with them.

THAT’S JUST UN-AMERICAN. Which is why the appeals court didn’t think twice before issuing the extension this week that was requested by the Illinois attorney general’s office.

The reason that it is not ridiculous to grant the extension is because the heavy lifting of the legislative process has been completed – the state Senate and Illinois House of Representatives have both passed a bill.

They did so in the final hours of the spring legislative session that ended on Friday, along with hundreds of other bills that same day.

In short, that’s quite a backlog. There was not a legislative aide who had to load up a wheelbarrow with bills and run them over to the governor’s office that same day. It takes time for the bills to work their way to the governor – who then gets 60 days to consider what to do.

WITHOUT AN EXTENSION, there’s a very good chance that the bill would have just been sent to Gov. Pat Quinn for consideration. So he wouldn’t have had much of a chance to review it before signing it into law.

Does it really sound right that Quinn would be expected to sign into law a measure immediately upon its receipt? Only to the social conservatives who want this issue enacted into law as a gesture of the majority having to accept something that they detest.

So now, the process can play itself out, and Quinn can consider the issue in due time; just like it will on the issue of “gay marriage” where the bill is still pending because a political suicide vote was not taken last week. On firearms, Quinn’s still going to be rushed, since he likely would have until mid-August to consider the issue – except that the court has now set July 9 as a deadline.

And for those who are arguing that Quinn ought to know what the bill is about, keep in mind that our political people really do trust each other so little that the governor’s staff will be reading through the bill to ensure that legislators didn’t slip something unexpected into the measure.

SO AS FAR as people trying to predict what Quinn will do, the governor probably is being honest by refusing to say much of anything.

Because even though it would make a certain amount of sense for him to just sign the measure into law (and claim the courts pressured him into it), Quinn is just contrarian enough to use his “veto” power to try to make a few changes.

Of course, an amendatory veto would mean the Legislature’s return in November to consider whether gubernatorial changes should be accepted, or not! Which would really infuriate the firearms proponents, since it would mean they’d have to wait even a few more months before their precious gun law letting them carry holstered pistols in public for alleged self-protection could take effect.

Considering how many years (if not decades) it takes for issues such as expanded gambling, a new Chicago-area airport or pension funding reform to get a serious debate, it still sounds like the equivalent of a legislative rush-job that will end up in their favor.


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