-By Warner Todd Huston
Illinois congressmen Joe Walsh (R, 8th District), Adam Kinzinger (R, 11th District), and Randy Hultgren (14th District) have issued statements on the recently passed National Right-to-Carry Act, a new law that will allow concealed-carry permit holders to carry their firearms in every state that allows concealed carry without worrying that they will be breaking the law.
Joe Walsh of the 8th District was pleased to say he stands with America’s gun owners.
“Today’s vote brings us one step closer to making Illinois a right-to-carry state and allowing Americans to exercise their Second Amendment rights across state lines. Currently, Illinois is the only state in this nation that denies its citizens the right to keep and bear arms. The vote today shows just how archaic Illinois’ gun laws have become and how important it is that they be repealed.
“I have been on the frontlines of the Second Amendment debate since I came to Congress in January. In a recent back-and-forth debate that I have had with the Brady Campaign, I have defended the Second Amendment stressing the importance of gun rights and how they are being disregarded, especially in Illinois.
“I am pleased with the outcome of today’s vote and will always be an outspoken advocate for Second Amendment rights and particularly, a repeal of Illinois laws preventing the right-to-carry.”
Congressman Kinzinger also favored the law.
“Today’s bipartisan passage for the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act grants law-abiding citizens with valid permits or licenses to bear concealed firearms in other states that permit concealed carry.
“Unfortunately, the bill will not apply in Illinois, which does not issue permits because Illinois Governor Pat Quinn fails to understand the risks he manufactures in the very state in which he governs. Although Governor Quinn does not understand the importance of allowing the state’s own citizens the right to carry, I do, which is why I co-sponsored this bill along with eight other members of Congress from Illinois. I refuse to deny the residents of other states -and Illinois residents who have gotten nonresident permits elsewhere- the right to travel freely and safely in the 49 states that have not tried to completely eliminate that right.
“This legislation further upholds Americans’ Second Amendment right to carry wherever permitted by states. Visiting gun owners must follow the laws and regulations of the concealed firearm in that state.
“It is high time that Illinois wake up and acknowledge this fundamental right is neither a Republican nor a Democratic issue; rather it’s about giving honest citizens the right to self-defense.
“I strongly encourage those in the Illinois Delegation to do all they can to support this Second Amendment right so that one day Illinois will follow the example set by every other state in this nation and allow law-abiding citizens to own and bear arms.”
Finally, Congressman Hultgren also had some things to say about the law.
“Today’s vote is a victory for gun-owning, law-abiding citizens nationwide,” said Hultgren. “The passage of H.R. 822 means that a concealed carry license, like a driver’s license, must be recognized by other states. This commonsense bill ensures that a law-abiding citizen’s Second Amendment right to self-defense does not stop at their state line, and I was proud to support its passage.”
“NRA has made the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act a priority because it enhances the fundamental right to self-defense guaranteed to all law-abiding people,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action. “People are not immune from crime when they cross state lines. That is why it is vital for them to be able to defend themselves and their loved ones should the need arise. And today, thanks to the work of Randy Hultgren, Congress has moved one step closer to advance crucial self-defense laws in this country.”
The bill easily passed the House on November 16.