Chicago Handgun Ban Survives First Challenge

A federal judge on Thursday upheld Chicago’s 1982 handgun ban as Mayor Daley disclosed plans to strengthen it by following Washington D.C.’s lead.

In a 5-to-4 decision in June, the Supreme Court overturned the D.C. handgun ban on grounds that the Second Amendment establishes the right to own a handgun for personal self-defense, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Hours later, the National Rifle Association and the Illinois State Rifle Association filed lawsuits seeking to overturn handgun bans in Chicago, Morton Grove, Evanston and Oak Park. Wilmette and Morton Grove subsequently repealed their handgun bans. Chicago held fast.

"City taxpayers are going to pay more money in legal fees for a fight they will ultimately lose. The city is only postponing the inevitable. They won this round. But if this thing goes to the Supreme Court, we will prevail. The court laid out a very compelling case with a lot of foundation for an individual's right to bear arms," said Todd Vandermyde, the Illinois legislative liaison for the NRA.

Following the ruling, Daley said he will host a "gun conference" next month to look for ways to beef up gun laws and get guns off the streets.

The mayor said he would bring in leaders from across the country and people who have lost loved ones to gun violence. He said the attendees plan to review recent Supreme Court decisions that limited how cities can regulate guns.

"I believe the court's ruling presents us with an opportunity to continue our efforts," Daley is quoted by the Chicago Tribune as saying.

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