Illinois Judge Considering Order To Declare State Gun Ban Unconstitutional

A judge in Macon County, Illinois, is considering a final order that would establish the unconstitutionality of Illinois’ gun ban and registry after hearing arguments on the case on March 3. The judge said his decision would come in “a couple of days.”

Judge Rodney Forbes is presented with an agreed order that would declare Illinois’ “Assault Weapons Ban” unconstitutional. If he signs the order, the gun measure would be appealed directly to the Illinois Supreme Court.

A ruling of Illinois’ 5th Circuit Court of Appeals had previously upheld a similar ruling that grants a temporary restraining order against the ban for some plaintiffs. However, the appellate court’s decision does not please the state of Illinois, which hopes to expedite the case before the Supreme Court.

The whole case rests on a ban enacted by Governor J.B. Pritzker on Jan. 10 in response to the mass shooting at Highland Park during a Fourth of July parade last year. The ban prohibits certain semi-automatic weapons and magazines and requires residents to register such weapons purchased before the ban with the Illinois State Police by Jan. 1, 2024.

The enactment of the ban was followed by lawsuits, both at the federal and state levels. On the federal level, there are four cases set to be handled in court on April 12.

In a preliminary injunction filed Thursday, the state argued that the ban was aimed at covering the loopholes of the U.S. Constitution in modern times as the creation of the dangerous and unusual weapons out in the streets today could not have been foreseen back when the constitution was put together.

Plaintiffs disagreed, stating that the ban is a violation of citizens’ Second Amendment rights, which established their rights to keep and bear arms.

Rep. Dan Caulkins (R-IL), whose case was addressed in court on March 3, is one of those challenging the ban on the state level.

The case already secured a temporary restraining order that prohibits the state from enforcing the law against some plaintiffs who are fighting to protect their Second Amendment rights. A group of cases filed by attorney Thomas DeVore also have temporary restraining orders.

DeVore has long spoken against the gun law and has referred to it as “unconstitutional.” A major angle of his opposition focuses on how the law exempts certain people in security and law enforcement, as he argues that the exemption breaks the requirement of equal protection.