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Special session to focus on concealed carry, won't consider pension reform

July 9, 2013 2:51:47 AM PDT
On Tuesday, Illinois lawmakers will attempt to override the governor's rewrite of a bill to allow the concealed carry of firearms.

Governor Pat Quinn hopes the changes he made to a concealed carry bill last week survive a challenge by state lawmakers. Among the changes is a call to allow communities to ban assault weapons.

On Monday night, it was a contentious debate in Evanston. Those who support a ban on assault weapons want the City of Evanston to join with a number of other communities who have already banned them.

The debate come on the eve of a special session that begins in the morning in Springfield when lawmakers are expected to vote on the concealed carry bill again, overriding amendments governor Quinn made to the bill.

Those amendments include provisions to allow towns to vote on assault weapons and to ban guns in drinking establishments.

Gun rights supporters accuse the Governor of standing in the way of a court ordered compromise plan.

Pension reform will not be on the table

But they will not consider pension reform, the reason Pat Quinn called the special session.

"It's time for them to do their job. If they don't do their job by tomorrow, there will be consequences," said Gov. Pat Quinn.

The Governor would not specify the consequences if lawmakers do not vote Tuesday to resolve the state's nearly $100 billion pension debt crisis.

"They've refused to act. We're not going to take it any longer," said Gov. Quinn.

The bipartisan, House-Senate Conference Committee Chairman says the panel needs more time to write pension reform legislation. Quinn's democratic primary opponent Bill Daley again questioned the Governor's leadership.

"He did nothing, they did nothing and here we are once again going to have a Special Session tomorrow and it looks as though they'll do nothing," said Bill Daley.

But lawmakers will consider the governor's amendatory veto of the bill passed last spring to allow the concealed carry of firearms. Quinn rejected several parts of the measure.

"The legislature thinks that the bill they put on my desk is acceptable, having guns in bars," said Gov. Quinn. "I don't."

Meanwhile, Attorney General Lisa Madigan- still undecided about running for Governor- would not divulge her positions on concealed carry or pension reform.

"We'll see what's happening in Springfield. This is now in the hands of the Legislature," said Madigan.

"If people look at a different office to run for, they've got to take positions on these difficult issues," said Daley.

Finally the Governor, facing a day with no pension vote and a veto override, says he does not feel disrespected.

"I don't feel any kind of disrespect. I have the respect of the people of Illinois," said Gov. Quinn.

The Illinois House and Senate each will need three-fifths majorities to override the Governor's concealed carry vetoes. The special session gets underway Tuesday morning in Springfield.


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