Today the General Assembly debated SB1966, which we first wrote on in this article.
This debate was spirited, to say the least.
The Chief Sponsor was either confused or intentionally misleading regarding transfer attempts and what happens to those guns if the future buyer is unable to pass the mandatory background checks. The Sponsor claimed that if that person did not qualify for the purchase, the guns were to be given back to the seller, which is not what the bill says. In fact, the bill would require the seller to first go through yet another background check in order to get their own gun back from the dealer holding it. Additionally, that dealer holding those guns for transfer is required to turn over those guns to law enforcement in 24 hours, contrary to her claim that was not true, if the seller's background check fails, which can happen with a simple glitch in the system.
More importantly, requiring law-abiding citizens to provide fingerprints in order to exercise their 2nd Amendment tramples on that right as well as their 4th and 5th Amendment rights. As outlined during the floor debate, those very fingerprints will be provided to the ISP and the FBI and be accessible for the solving of other crimes. While I support the solving of crimes, a person who is forced to provide fingerprints to exercise their Constitutional Right should not have those prints be used as potential evidence in another crime. The 5th Amendment comes to mind in those cases.
Even though this bill has now passed out of the House and will surely pass out of the Senate, rest assured it will end up in the courts like so many other bills in Illinois.
The bill passed 62-52.