An Illinois judge declared the state’s gun ban and registry law unconstitutional on Friday.
The ruling by Macon County Judge Rodney Forbes means the law, signed by Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker in January, cannot be enforced and is now awaiting an appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court. Initially, Forbes intended to take a couple of days to consider his decision but later signed his order after a couple of hours, according to the Center Square.
“Well-established Illinois authority provides that a law declared unconstitutional pursuant to a facial challenge is void, as if the law never existed, and is unenforceable in its entirety, in all applications,” attorney Jerry Stocks, who was representing state Republican Rep. Dan Caulkins in this court decision, said in a statement after the order.
The state’s 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, a court higher than Forbes’s court, had already upheld a ruling that granted a temporary restraining order on the law, which prevented enforcement of the ban against named plaintiffs only, partially tying into Forbes’s decision on Friday. However, due to the latest ruling, the law being deemed unconstitutional applies to the entire state, according to Stocks.
Pritzker signed the assault-style weapons ban on Jan. 10 after being passed in both the state Senate and House. The bill banned the sale, delivery, and purchase of so-called ” assault weapons,” as defined by the bill, which categorizes more than 100 different types of rifles, shotguns, and pistols to be banned, and anyone with these types of weapons would be required to register them by Jan. 1, 2024.
Illinois has agreed to the language of the final order in the Macon County case but argued that the appellate court is wrong and aims to get this latest order to the state’s Supreme Court.
“Meanwhile, citizens are encouraged to proceed in the subject matter of the invalid legislation with caution and always are encouraged to seek the advice of his/her own counsel,” Stocks said.