IL senator calls for state action to prevent suspected terrorist - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

IL senator calls for state action to prevent suspected terrorists from buying guns

ILLINOIS (KFVS) -

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin sent a letter to Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner asking for state-level action to close a loophole he says would allow suspected terrorists to buy guns in Illinois.

In the letter, Durbin said:

“The horrific terror attacks in Paris, Colorado Springs, and San Bernardino have given new urgency to the need to close dangerous loopholes in our laws that allow would-be terrorists to buy guns. The highest priority for both the Governor and I is to keep Illinoisans safe, but Republicans in Congress continue to block even the most common sense anti-terror measures. Gun owners and non-gun owners alike can agree that keeping guns out of the hands of suspected terrorists is the right thing to do. I call on Governor Rauner to work with our state legislature to close this loophole."

On Thursday, Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced that he would sign a first-in-the-nation executive order, pending federal approval, to ban those on government watch lists from buying guns in his state.

The full letter says:

December 11, 2015

The Honorable Bruce Rauner
Office of the Governor
207 State House
Springfield, IL 62706

Dear Governor Rauner,

The recent attacks in Paris, Colorado Springs and San Bernardino have highlighted the vulnerability of our communities to acts of terror perpetrated with firearms.  These mass killings have given new urgency to the need to close dangerous loopholes in our laws that allow known or suspected terrorists to buy guns.  I am working to pass legislation to close this “terror gap” on a federal level, but prompt action should also be taken in Illinois to prevent known or suspected terrorists from using a FOID (Firearm Owner’s Identification) card to buy guns.  I urge you to do all within your power to close the “terror gap” on the state level in Illinois.

Gun owners and non-gun owners alike agree that keeping guns out of the hands of known and suspected terrorists is common sense.  This can also be done consistent with the U.S. and Illinois Constitutions and our commitment to due process.  Federal “terror gap” legislation contains significant procedural protections to ensure that any person mistakenly included on a prohibited gun buyer list can challenge that listing both administratively and in court and be removed from the list.  With these protections in place, a person mistakenly included on the list would only experience the temporary inconvenience of a delay in buying a gun while it is confirmed that the person is not involved in terrorist activity.  Similar protections can be applied on the state level.   

You and I agree on the need to keep Illinoisans safe from acts of terror, and I hope we can work to swiftly close the “terror gap” on both the state and federal levels.  Addressing this vulnerability will make our communities safer. 

Thank you for your attention to this matter. 

Sincerely,

RICHARD J. DURBIN
United States Senator

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