Illinois Senate, House agree on assault weapons ban, spending bill


State Sen. Jil Tracy (R-Quincy)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — State Senator Jil Tracy (R-Quincy) said Democrat leaders have “sidestepped full legislative accountability” by forcing through votes on a controversial gun control bill during the General Assembly’s lame-duck session on Jan. 9.

The 102nd General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn on Tuesday with the 103rd General Assembly convening the following day, Jan. 11.

Tracy said because of its impact on the constitutionally protected rights of Illinois residents, gun control legislation should not be decided by lawmakers who will not be in office after Jan. 10 and no longer accountable to the voters.

“Today’s legislative action by the Senate is a slap in the face to law-abiding gun owners and will do little to nothing to reduce violent crime in Illinois,” Tracy said. “Almost equally appalling is what’s becoming a standard maneuver to allow outgoing legislators the ability to vote on such controversial measures with ever being accountable to their voters. That kind of maneuvering does not do much to promote faith in the legislative process.”

Tracy said she does not support House Bill 5471 because it erodes citizens’ Second Amendment rights to bear arms.

Tracy further lamented on the lame-duck session, saying Democrat leaders forced through an irresponsible spending bill vote after-hours on Sunday night that was quickly signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker.

Senate Bill 1720 contains a salary increase of about 18 percent for Illinois legislators, and also gives the Governor $400 million for a so-called “business closing fund” with little oversight on how he chooses to use it.

“The support by Democrat leaders of such a self-centered vote shows that their claims of working on behalf of the average Illinois resident are suspect,” Tracy said. “Very few hard-working, tax-paying Illinoisans are allowed to give themselves a raise, as well as supply their boss with a pot full of cash for pet projects,” Tracy said. “Families are struggling to stay afloat financially, as costs are spiraling higher as a result of bad decisions by some government officials about spending priorities.”

Passed by the House of Representatives on Jan. 6, Senate Bill 1720 was approved by the Senate in a Sunday-night vote on Jan. 8, and Gov. JB Pritzker’s office announced Monday morning Jan. 9 that he had signed it into law.

Tracy said a family medical emergency kept her from physically voting against Senate Bill 1720 on Jan. 8, but she does not support what she called an “irresponsible use of taxpayer funds”.

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